Welcome to Gyrox Goes Global - an Official FAI Record attempt to fly an Autogyro around the world.
Welcome to the central point for information about Norman Surplus and G-YROX in their quest to make the first circumnavigation of the globe using an Autogyro/Gyrocopter/Gyroplane aircraft. Piloted by Norman Surplus,the autogyro G-YROX, now affectionately known by the nickname, 'Roxy', spanned the globe between March 2010 and August 2015 crossing 23 countries, flying over 27,000 miles / 43,000 kilometers, across deserts, jungles, mountains and oceans. The full circumnavigtion flight was halted only by the Russian Security Service (which prevented the flight from crossing the Bering Sea from the Far East of Russia to Alaska) During the course of the flight 9x Official FIA World Records have been set and a further 10x FAI World Records are currently in the process of being ratified, including the Record for the first ever crossing of the North Atlantic Ocean by an autogyro aircraft. Norman has also been using the flight to raise funds and bring awarness of Bowel Cancer to a worldwide audience.
Book writing continues!
Norman's update - Feb 2016:
I feel the very best way to describe the whole global flight is to write it all down in a book. I was flying solo, unaccompanied by other aircraft and without the support of a following ground crew. Most of the experiences I had along the way therefore were often felt internally, personally, rather than described in the context of being a shared experience with other people. Coping with the extreme isolation, and extreme climates, at times perhaps 3 hours flight away from the nearest civilisation - sitting alone in the open cockpit hour after hour, there was quite simply no one else there to share the story with...
I am therefore focusing efforts now on writing a definitive account of the whole flight, to offer an insight into what it would have been like to be sitting in the back seat of Roxy as we set out on this global adventure together, uncertain and unknowning of the very real trials and tribulations that would unfold along the way.
Writing a book is, in a way, another adventure in itself. Consulting again my notes and flight entries diary, it is allowing me to relive many of the small episodes that perhaps my brain has defensively "forgotten" about as the flight progressed. With time now to reflect, I am able to add in these details to accompany the more major extraordinary events that punctuated the journey, such as two forced landings and a dunking in a Thai lake, as witnessed along the way by our entries in the Gyrox Goes Global blog.
Time to get back to the keyboard!
Norman and "Roxy" were held up in Japan (the 18th country) for 3 YEARS! From July 2011 until September 2014 the whole GGG team waited patiently for the Russian Federation to finally allow this officially sanctioned FAI World Record attempt to continue, so that the flight could be permitted to cross the Russian Far East to reach Alaska and beyond. It is a circumnavigation flight that ideally should have taken only 4 months to complete and yet, with added bureacracy, it has taken over 5 years to complete... In the main, that lengthy delay was focused directly onto the (in)action of one particular Russian Government Agency, whose officials were consistently reluctant to engage and identify with the international spirit of basic human endeavour that this sort of World Record flight embraces. Thankfully it is a spirit that is still both celebrated and demonstrated in abundance by the aviation communities in all of the other en route countries along the route.
As the years rolled on the wait became intollerable and with events surrounding Russian diplomacy towards the rest of the world seemingly going backwards during 2014, the inevitable unfortunate decision reluctantly had to be made to completely by-pass the Russian section and carry on without them.
Norman has often said "the red tape of officialdom makes the actual flying of the aircraft feel like the most easy aspect of this journey..." quite something to say when you consider the aircraft is "open cockpit", only 5 metres long and has no Autopilot or Co-Pilot to assist with the workload....
And so it was, in the late summer of 2014, Roxy had to be put in a container and shipped across the Pacific from Japan to the West Coast of America...were the aircraft was hosted over the winter and put on temporary display at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Musuem in McMinnville, Oregon.
June 2015 saw Norman fly Coast to Coast across the United States from Portland Oregon to Portland Maine and in July 2015 the determined autogyro pioneer set off into the frozen barren north of Canada to make the North Atlantic crossing via Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands and Outer Hebrides in Scotland. Extreme weather variations and the Arctic climate conditions played a very significant role in the 3 week Atlantic crossing and so it was very understandable when Norman described recently that the whole global flight up to that point as "merely a training flight" for the North Atlantic section.... the story was successfully concluded on 11th August 2015 when Norman and Roxy touched down once again in the place they took off from 5 years earlier, a sports field called Sandy Bay in Norman's home town of Larne in Northern Ireland.
You can re-visit the whole global adventure right back to the beginning of the flight in March 2010 by visiting the GGG travel blog at
Like to show your support? Due to his direct personal experience with advanced stage bowel cancer, Norman has opted to support and promote Bowel Cancer UK as his chosen charity during our global adventure together.
If you would like to show support and donate to this small, very worthy, yet perhaps not so well known (a bit like the Autogyro!) charity cause, then please feel free to drop by out Just Giving donation page at: