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Tuesday 14th July 2020

Pilot who taught Carol Vorderman killed in plane crash

Emily Collett was killed alongside student pilot Tom Castle

A champion pilot, Emily Collett, who once took Carol Vorderman up in her plane, has been killed in a plane crash alongside her student Tom Castle.

Emily, 36, and Tom, 43, were practising a mid-air stunt near Stonor, Oxfordshire, when their Pitts S-2Aplane crashed into a field.

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Emily was a national aerobatics champion and taught former Countdown presenter Carol Vorderman how to do the loop to loop back in July, 2017.

Carol had posted about her training with Emily on social media, and tweeted at the time: "I loved doing the loop with this top woman Emily Collett . . . just brilliant x."

Emily was reportedly practising spins with Tom when their plane went down on Saturday afternoon.

They had taken off from White Waltham airfield near Maidenhead, Berkshire earlier that day.

Emily was an incredibly talented and highly experienced aerobatic pilot.

Cambridge-educated Emily ran Ultimate Aerobatics from the airfield with her husband Mike.

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She had her first flying lesson aged just 14, and went on to win the UK standard class nationals in G-ODDS.

Graeme Fudge, of the British Aerobatic Association, paid tribute to Emily.

According to The SunGraeme said: "Emily was an incredibly talented and highly experienced aerobatic pilot.

Carol Vorderman is a qualified IR pilot (Credit: ITV)

"A caring and considerate nature, Emily’s generosity in sharing her knowledge and time to help others was well known in the aerobatic community and beyond, helping many pilots achieve their goals.

"Emily will be sadly missed by all who knew her and our thoughts are with her family and friends who have lost a wonderful daughter, wife and friend."

Carol paid tribute to her on Twitter, writing: "Such a terrible terrible loss... Emily was an extraordinary young woman and pilot and my time with her in the air was nothing but a joy.

"My heart goes out to her husband Mike, to Emily's family and to Tom Castle's family in their grief. Rest In Peace."

On Emily's website she eerily wrote of her plane: "She shows up all your mistakes, so that you quickly learn how to ­prevent them!"

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