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Silver Spitfire sets off on 'The Longest Flight'

PUBLISHED: 17:04 06 August 2019 | UPDATED: 10:50 08 August 2019

IWC Schaffhausen and the Boultbee Flight Academy, in collaboration with Aviation Adventures Ltd, have celebrated the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

IWC Schaffhausen and the Boultbee Flight Academy, in collaboration with Aviation Adventures Ltd, have celebrated the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

2019 Getty Images

On 5 August Boultbee Flight Academy's highly polished, Mk IX Spitfire G-IRTY departed Goodwood Aerodrome in the hands of Matt Jones at the start of its 'Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight' expedition around the world

The flight follows two years of preparation during which more than a dozen specialists have worked on the restoration and preparation of the aircraft, which was originally built at Castle Bromwich in 1943.

British actor Finn Cole attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).British actor Finn Cole attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

"The last few months have been intense, and full of activity… We're thrilled that we can finally begin our great adventure and share the glory of the Silver Spitfire with the rest of the world.

IWC black tie cocktail reception followed by a private dinner with the pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones at Goodwood House to celebrate the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight expedition in Goodwood. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).IWC black tie cocktail reception followed by a private dinner with the pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones at Goodwood House to celebrate the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight expedition in Goodwood. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

"It's a massive undertaking and a huge privilege to be involved in such a project. Now it's time to make history," said academy founder Steve Boultbee Brooks, who will be sharing the piloting duties with Matt Jones.

IWC black tie cocktail reception followed by a private dinner with the pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones at Goodwood House to celebrate the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).IWC black tie cocktail reception followed by a private dinner with the pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones at Goodwood House to celebrate the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

"I am excited to witness the start of the expedition. Never in the history of aviation has a Spitfire embarked on such a long and arduous journey.

Pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood.  (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).Pilots Steve Boultbee Brooks and Matt Jones attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

"I wish Steve Boultbee Brooks, Matt Jones and the entire ground crew every success," added Christoph Grainger-Herr, CEO of the project's principal sponsor, Swiss watch company IWC Schaffhausen.

Christoph Grainger-Herr attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).Christoph Grainger-Herr attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

On the flight around the world, the two British pilots will cover more than 23,000nm and visit thirty countries.

Goodwood on August 4, 2019 in Chichester, England. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC)Goodwood on August 4, 2019 in Chichester, England. (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC)

The route will initially take them to Iceland, and from there to Canada and the USA.

IWC Schaffhausen and the Boultbee Flight Academy, in collaboration with Aviation Adventures Ltd, have celebrated the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).IWC Schaffhausen and the Boultbee Flight Academy, in collaboration with Aviation Adventures Ltd, have celebrated the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

The plan is to complete the flight in 100 or so individual segments, suggesting that while the total distance covered may set a new record, the one for the longest distance non-stop Spitfire flight of 1,620nm (from Dakar, Senegal across the Atlantic to Natal in Brazil) set by Capt James Story, flying a PR XI on 3 May 1947, will remain unbroken.

IWC brand ambassador David Coulthard attending the celebration of the official start of the “Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).IWC brand ambassador David Coulthard attending the celebration of the official start of the “Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

IWC brand ambassador Rosamund Pike attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).IWC brand ambassador Rosamund Pike attending the celebration of the official start of the Silver Spitfire - The Longest Flight� expedition in Goodwood (Photo by Remy Steiner/Getty Images for IWC).

Restored Silver Spitfire seen off on global tour by host of celebritiesRestored Silver Spitfire seen off on global tour by host of celebrities

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