Young aviator lands in Scotland in final days of world record flight

Mack Rutherford stopped off in Dubai and Oman on his epic journey

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A teenager bidding to become the youngest person to fly solo around the world has landed in the UK as he enters the final days of his epic challenge.

Mack Rutherford, 17, took-off from Sofia, Bulgaria, on March 23, stopping off in Dubai and Oman in early June in his two-seater single propeller ultralight plane, built by Slovakian manufacturers Shark Aero.

If Mack, who is a British-Belgian, lands back in Bulgaria as planned by Wednesday, August 24, he will break the current record for the youngest man to fly solo around the world.

That is currently held by Briton Travis Ludlow, who was just 18 years and 150 days old when he circumnavigated the globe in 2021, completing the 40,072km journey in just 44 days.

After landing in Aberdeen, Scotland, on Saturday, Mack said he hoped to inspire other young people to chase their dreams.

“There are many people of my age who do amazing things. Often few people know about them,” he told Press Association.

“Together we can show that young people make a difference.”

Initial plans were to complete his challenge within three months, but hold-ups caused by visa and permit applications saw him delayed in Crete for a month and then again in Dubai for six weeks.

The young aviator has been collecting stickers and commemorative coins on stop-offs during his journey.

He qualified for his pilot licence in September 2020, which at the time made him the youngest pilot in the world at just 15 years and two months.

Mack, who turned 17 on June 21, has big shoes to fill.

His older sister Zara became the youngest person to fly around the world in a microlight when she completed the feat in January, aged 19.

Updated: August 21, 2022, 6:55 AM