A TOP aerobatic pilot who taught Countdown’s Carol Vorderman to loop-the-loop has died while performing a mid-air stunt.
Emily Collett, 36, was practising spins with student flier Tom Castle, 43, when the Pitts S-2A two-seater crashed into a field.
Police said they were pronounced dead at the scene on Saturday near Stonor village in Oxfordshire.
Air Accidents Investigation Branch experts carried out an on-site examination yesterday before the light aircraft was lifted on to a low loader and driven to their Hampshire HQ.
Emily had earlier taken off from White Waltham airfield near Maidenhead, Berks, where she and husband Mike ran Ultimate Aerobatics. Both were pilots who competed as part of the British Aerobatics team.
Emily had learned her skills in the Pitts S-2A which crashed and taught TV’s Countdown legend Carol in it in July, 2017.
Carol posted snaps of the pair and wrote: “I loved doing the loop with this top woman Emily Collett . . . just brilliant x.”
In a haunting message on her website, Cambridge- educated Emily said of the plane: “She shows up all your mistakes, so that you quickly learn how to prevent them!”
Graeme Fudge, from the British Aerobatic Association, said: “Emily was an incredibly talented and highly experienced aerobatic pilot.
“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.”