Royalty and statesmen

The soldier Prince has begun a pilot assessment course in a Slingsby Firefly aircraft as a first step towards his dream of flying a helicopter
Photo: Rex
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Harry takes first step towards dream of becoming a helicopter pilot

19 NOVEMBER 2008
With his brother William preparing to train as a search and rescue pilot Prince Harry has taken the first steps towards his own dream military career flying attack helicopters.

On Tuesday the Blues and Royals officer began a month-long assessment with the Army Air Corps to see if he has the aptitude to handle aircraft such as the Apache, which can cost up to 35 million.

Harry was seen smiling confidently after taking to the skies with an instructor for just over an hour in a yellow Firefly two-seater training plane.

Earlier this year the Prince was pulled off a frontline posting in Afghanistan over concerns about his security. He apparently believes he has more chance of being deployed in a war zone again as a helicopter pilot.

In October the royal soldier passed initial tests at RAF college Cranwell. If he successfully completes the current stage the next hurdle in the highly competitive recruitment process is the pilot's selection board interview in January.

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