2012 has been an exciting year for HPH UK and as the year draws to a close, I thought that it might be useful to update you on the progress we have made in promoting the HPH Shark brand into the UK market.
April / May saw the first UK Shark deliveries (on-time) , the first a self-launcher, and the second a Jet. It didn’t take too long for the owners to take the sailplanes into the air and to start showing the potential of the sailplane as a cross-country vehicle.
Despite the Olympic airspace, one pilot flew the fastest 500km+ flight in the UK on one of the better days in his Shark self-launcher.
Another pilot entered a regionals with his Shark Jet and whistled around the task on only his third flight in his glider to place 4th for the day.
Since then, the Shark brand has been seen at a number of clubs in England and Wales soaring thermals, ridge and wave to good effect.
This increased physical presence at clubs, in the press and on the ladder has triggered a surge of interest, and this has resulted in a number of pilots visiting the factory (which is only a short flight away) to fly the Shark and most have placed orders.
Consequently, we will see a very busy 2013 as a number of new Shark sailplanes are delivered for UK customers and move us well towards our goal of a “double-figure” installed base. We also expect that 2013 will see the Shark as the most prolific Jet powered sailplane in the UK.
In addition to our website, HPH UK have created a facebook presence in the latter part of the year and this has proved effective in allowing us to update people quickly on news from HPH and its customers, both in the UK and worldwide. (see http://www.facebook.com/HphSailplanesUK)
The factory is currently very busy and the winter is a good time for them as they focus on manufacturing as there is less work to do on the airfield. Currently a large batch of self-launchers is moving through the manufacturing cycle and a batch of Jet Shark sailplanes are popping out of the moulds to meet 2013 demand.
The development moulds are yielding something new also. A two seat or “Twin Shark” is moving to reality and as agents we believe that this is something that is an exciting prospect and would be keen to talk to interested parties in the early part of 2013 and explain why this is could deliver leading performance in the 20 meter flapped two-seat class.
As your agents, we also plan to be present at the BGA conference in March 2013 and to have a Shark sailplane available for you to look around and convince yourself of the quality and design detail which makes the Shark a brand worthy of consideration at the highest level.
So 2012 is drawing to a close, but 2013 is exciting in itself. We would very much like to invite you to visit HPH to see and fly the Shark with the motivation to convince you why others have decided to join the growing group of Shark pilots here in the UK.
It only leaves us to wish you all a good Christmas and a Happy New year. Lets hope 2013 will bring some excellent soaring for us all.