A Sea King emergency landing demonstration piloted by Prince William led to positive coverage in the media — for the helicopter.
The Canadian Forces were pleased with the positive coverage given to the July 4, 2011 flight, according to documents released under federal Access to Information laws.
The second in line to the British throne flew a Sea King over Dalvay Lake, P.E.I., as part of last year's Royal Tour with his wife, Kate Middleton.
The Duke of Cambridge is a Royal Air Force helicopter pilot and known professionally as Flight Lt. William Wales.
The couple was well-received across Canada, drawing huge crowds on their nine-day tour.
A brief email from the man who co-piloted the CH 124 helicopter notes the flight went "very well."
"Flight was conducted [in accordance with] normal [Waterbird standard operating procedures] and flight profile," said an email about the flight.
"The event was heavily covered by local, national, and international media. All coverage of the CH 124 participation was overwhelmingly positive."
'You should have offered him a job'
The response notes there's no more follow-up required and jokes, "You should have offered [William] a job :)"
Department of National Defence brass were watching the planning for the emergency landing demonstration, according to the emails.
A briefing note was prepared for Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Walt Natynczyk on June 24, 2011.
The training, known as Waterbird within the military, is routine and mandatory for all Canadian Forces Maritime Helicopter pilots, the report notes.
Part of the report referring to William's qualification is blanked out, however.
"Although Royal Air Force (RAF) Sea King qualified, HRH The Duke of Cambridge [text redacted]"
The note also blanks out the number of hours of experience William has with the RAF Sea King, as well as the number of hours needed to become a Military Helicopter pilot under training (known as an MH UT) and undergo Waterbird training.
The RAF and Canadian Sea Kings have almost identical flight characteristics, the briefing note says.
William was designated an MH UT for the landing, but the training had to be conducted under the supervision of a qualified Waterbird Sea King instructor pilot.
"This is in accordance with established procedure and has been approved in the past for other RAF pilots who have come to Canada to participate in Waterbird training since the RAF does not conduct equivalent training on their Sea King helicopters," the briefing note says.
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