A report from Ludwig Starkl, Antares fan from the very beginning: On Tuesday, February 7, a very audacious person arrived in Zweibrücken. Uli Schwenk, who is not completely unknown in the soaring scene, could not refuse my invitation to be one of the first to fly the new Antares 23E.

Before his departure in Münsingen on Tuesday morning, an approaching front from the east had brought the first snow showers in addition to the icy temperatures. After a brief call to Zweibrücken, his decision was made. Despite the extreme weather conditions, Uli Schwenk was determined to test Lange Aviation’s new racehorse and made his way to Zweibrücken. The new patterns for the Jaxida covers could then also be adjusted.

At 1 p.m., following the obligatory briefing on the Lange electric aircraft systems and a little refreshment, Uli took over the aircraft for his test flight. In 15-20 kts of icy north wind and -12 °C (10 °F) air temperature, he was airborne after only a few meters and escaped the view of the spectators. Uli only returned after more than an hour, having taken advantage of the weakest climb in front of the snow showers. He was beaming all over his face and, over warming drinks, very emotionally described to those present the impressions he had gained during his flight. I recorded his words: ” I would never have expected this, it flies as smoothly as my Kestrel from 30 years ago, I haven’t experienced anything like it since; I immediately felt at home in the aircraft; this thermal sensitivity is really impressive; the visibility is gigantic; the motor control – it’s so easy, only now do I realize the dimensions; the aircraft absolutely has to go to the south of France, that’s where I have to fly it again.”

I am glad that I was able to give Uli these unforgettable impressions during his first flight with an Antares. I myself have been delighted with the quality, features and performance of the Antares range for years. Only much later did I realize how cold it had been that day, when none of Uli’s photos could be used. The camera had simply frozen.