Nate Bruss Solo Pilots 10 Airplanes on His 16th Birthday

Nate Bruss celebrates turning 16 by solo piloting 10 airplanes in one day.
Nate Bruss celebrated his 16th birthday with a world record.

Birthdays ordinarily include friends, family, presents, lots of cake and a few cheers to another year. Nate Bruss’ 16th birthday was anything but ordinary. On August 16th, Nate rang in his big day by making it even bigger: he set the world record for solo-piloting 10 aircraft in one day. He was accustomed to airplanes, taking his first flight at the age of two, and was inspired by a magazine article on the topic of the previous solo piloting record for tail wheel aircraft in one day, which was 7.    
Bruss began the process in May by lining up usable planes. He completed 7-10 hours of training in each aircraft, flying about two times per week.  By the beginning of August, he was flying 5-6 times per day.
Beyond the act of physically flying, Bruss was preparing in other ways as well. He studied the operating handbook for each aircraft and made spreadsheets detailing all the important and necessary information to fly each one. When the big day arrived, “the first one I did with my dad, who was my instructor,” Bruss says. “We did two take off and landings together to make sure I was ready. At about 7:30 a.m., he got out of the aircraft and at that point I was very nervous, and had butterflies in my stomach. After I took off, it felt very comfortable and normal to be flying.”
Nate is currently awaiting validation from Guinness World Records to affirm his record of soloing 10 planes in one day. And, he has begun his first year at Maple Grove Senior High School. Asked if his first day of high school or the flight conquest made him more anxious, Nate says, “I kind of told myself that since I accomplished that feat, going to high school shouldn’t make me nervous."