Editor’s Note: We’re excited to introduce you to the innovative, bold, and talented individuals competing in GoFly. Our teams come from all over the world, shaped by their diverse backgrounds and unique life experiences. We can’t wait to see what they’ll build, but in the meantime, get to know the people behind the devices.


We all have that one moment in our past when we discovered our passion—in this week’s post, our competitors reflect on when they fell in love with flight and share their memories of aviation.

“There is nothing quite like the roar of a jet engine during take-off, or getting into a plane in cold weather and getting off in the tropics just hours later. Flying is like a portal to another world. When I was in primary school, I remember organizing a flight crew team in my class. I wanted to be a pilot as a kid, but as time went by, I became more interested in designing aircraft and pushing boundaries.”

—David Oort Alonso, Team Project Talaria, Spain

“My earliest memory of aviation is being taken by my father to Toronto International Airport when I was about four years old. By age five or six, I was making model planes out of the cardboard that came with his shirts when he picked them up from the dry cleaners.”

—Gary Gress, Team Athena Aero, Canada

“When I was three or four years old, my dad built me a wooden box with wings and a tail, and I tried pretty mightily to figure out a way to get that thing off the ground.”

— Jim Corning, FanFlyer, United States

“I’m passionate about aviation because for as long as I can remember, my family and I have been flying out to see relatives on the other side of the world. In high school, [my professors] actually encouraged to drop physics and math because I wasn’t good enough. I’d love to rub that in their faces now.”

—Lina Hosking, Team Project Talaria, The Netherlands

“Not sure if my earlier memory of flight is the drogue parachute I found or the cardboard wings strapped to my back, running down a hill as fast as I could… just trying to get a little air.”

— Stephen Tibbitts, Team ZEVA, United States


Competing in Phase II? Submit your responses to our team questionnaire, and see your response featured here, too!