Spitfire makes a pitstop

A 1943 Silver Spitfire landed in Kelowna on Thursday just after 10:00 a.m. for a brief pit stop on its journey around the world.

"So far the machine has worked very well, we totally rebuilt it over the last couple of years," said Steve Brooks, pilot of the Spitfire.

"It's the original 1943 Spitfire so everything on it is as it was in that period."

Rebuilding the WW II aircraft took approximately two and a half years with all panels taken apart, examined and put back together, along with a complete engine rebuild.

"To fly the plane it is so small you sort of wear it, rather than fly it," said Brooks.

Brooks suggests that approximately only 40 Spitfires remain in the world out of over 20,000 that were originally built.

"Most of them just got chucked away after the war but a lot of them got damaged of course," said Brooks.

Brooks was thrilled and surprised at the turnout of people waiting for the aircraft to arrive at the Kelowna Flying Club at the Kelowna International Airport.

"Kelowna is amazing, I couldn't believe it, there were people everywhere, it's extraordinary," said Brooks.

"We saw the emotion it caused in people so we thought how about taking one around the world and go to all these countries letting people hear that engine and see it in the skies."

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