VIDEO – At the Leaseweb Texel Airshow last month in the Netherlands, Leaseweb founder and CEO Con Zwinkels invited HostingJournalist.com to come fly with Leaseweb in their own Extra 330LT aerobatic airplane – an aircraft designed by German aerobatic pilot Walter Extra and allowing for the fastest and unlimited level aerobatics to be performed whilst carrying a passenger – in this case Koen Stegeman, HostingJournalist.com’s Editor-in-Chief. This week he took the opportunity to be taken to the clouds by Leaseweb, literally, with this extreme aerobatics machine.
Leaseweb is one of the largest IaaS hosting providers in the world, with more than 80,000 dedicated servers under management and a global footprint of 19 data centers located across Europe, Asia, Australia, and North America. As the founders of Leaseweb used to be international airline pilots (actually, they were flying large KLM and Martinair aircrafts until a few years ago), they brought their passion for aviation and flight technology to the hosting company and incorporated flying into the company’s DNA. Don’t be surprised as a Leaseweb employee to find yourself able to fly in a flight simulator during a team outing, or getting free tickets for your family to get a VIP treatment during an airshow.
Leaseweb’s company aerobatic aircraft, their Extra 330LT machine, is also part of the company DNA. It is said to be the fastest non-turbocharged, single-propeller airplane in the world. Designed by Walter Extra, this airplane is powered by a Lycoming AEIO-580 engine with a total capacity of over 315 horsepower and a maximum speed of almost 250 miles/hour (almost 400 kilometers/hour). It has been designed to be able to withstand forces of up to 10G! This aircraft is used by Leaseweb to share its founders’ passion for flight technology with others and take customers and business partners to the clouds, literally so to say.
HostingJournalist.com’s Editor-in-Chief, at first, felt a bit of hesitation when thinking of making loopings, rolls or hammerheads high up in the clouds. “It is so extreme, and it’s definitely not something everyone would love doing. I also like to keep my two feet on the ground, most of the time,” said Koen Stegeman. “On the other hand, it is tempting to push your personal limits and quite interesting to see that the Leaseweb founders have made this aerobatic flying activity part of their daily lives. There’s also an obvious parallel to make when it comes to migrating your IT environment to the cloud with Leaseweb. At first, there might be a healthy amount of hesitation when it comes to cloud. Were will your data be located? How are the data management processes being organized? Is there an SLA available? And what about the control mechanisms in place? But in the end, a lot comes down to trust. You just have to trust the technology and the people, in this case the pilot behind the steering wheel. And that’s what I just did.”
Although Leaseweb founder Con Zwinkels is flying the Extra 330 himself, this week he was replaced by Paul Reijnen – a KLM Boeing 747 pilot flying aerobatics aircrafts as well. Want to see our Editor-in-Chief Koen Stegeman going to the clouds with Mr. Reijnen and withstand (or not) the speed and extreme G-forces of Leaseweb’s Extra 330 aircraft?
Please stay tuned, to be continued…