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Yesterday, 8 January 2012 saw a Pipistrel motor glider leave the factory in Slovenia and fly the first leg of and 88,000 km trip westbound around the world ! The Pilot Matevz Lenarcic has once before flown a Pipistrel Sinus aircraft eastbound around the world in 2007. This aircraft was a standard Pipistrel Sinus with Rotax 80 hp engine the only modifications being an autopilot and a long range fuel tank. On this trip his aircraft has been updated to the latest model Pipistrel Virus SW aircraft, this time fitted with the Rotax 914 turbocharged engine which will allow him to fly at high altitudes including over the top of Mount Everest. The first leg of his trip completed yesterday saw him fly from Slovenia which is near the very northern tip of Italy, over the Alps, through the mad and finally landing 8.5 hours later in Morocco Africa. I believe tomorrow is a shorter leg of some six hours and the following day will see him crossing the Atlantic from Africa to land in South America! This is a great adventure and something I am hoping all touring motor glider pilots can follow and use not only for inspiration but also the bragging rights when it comes to comparing our aircraft against others like Cessna's and Pipers etc.... Please join the trip around the world by following http://www.worldgreenflight.com/ which I understand will be updated every day or so. As soon as I get all the final track details I will be sure to let you know because if you are enroute it may be a great opportunity to offer overnight hangerage and meet a very exceptional person ! Take care, Michael Coates Pipistrel USA