Friday, August 29, 2008

Jean Cliquet 1911-1997

Jean Cliquet was born in 1911 and had a rich career in aviation ever since. He joined the French Navy in 1928. In July 1930 he flew various aircraft types, Hanriot, Caudron, Nieuport, Dewoitine, Farman and seaplanes of Farman, Cams, Latham, Gourdoux. From 1935 to 1937 he was supervisor to the Royan Flights School before joining Morane-Saulnier in 1937, where he remained for the next 25 years as Chief Test Pilot, with only an interruption of two years during the war, as a pilot for Air France.

He made the first flight of the first French prototype after the war, the Mr.s. 470, the first of 26 prototypes that he flew between 1945 and 1960! Among these the twin-engined MS.702 with which he flew 28,000 km in Africa in 1950. He also flew the "Fleuret", the competitor of the twin-engined "Magister" which was the origin of the MS.760 "Paris", the first twin-engined private jet in 1954. Cliquet has flown more than 10,000 hours.