Jeff Thompson awarded the Jon Russell award at United
States National Balloon Classic.
With a best average of 837.4 Jeff Thompson has again
posted scores high enough to be ranked among the top pilots in the
United states for the second year in a row. This will also almost
guarantee him his FOURTH State Championship title in a row. Now
for 8 years straight the Florida State Champion has been a Thompson and
Jeff has won it 5 out of the last 6 years.
Jeff Thompson at
the Indianola Iowa race finished 12th overall and posted a National
Ranking score of 873.6 This average should rank him amongst the
top TEN pilots in the United States and award him the 2011 Florida State
Balloon Federation Ranking
It is official. Capt.
Jeff A. Thompson finished 2011
ranked number 10 in the United States and the 2011 Florida State Champion.
Captain Thompson has now been State Champ for three years straight!
We do suggest everyone read
About the Aircraft
You can tell Capt Thompson used to be
a flight instructor!
Hi Jeff -
I don't know where to begin to tell
what an amazing experience is hot air ballooning. I don't understand
why it's not one of Orlando's top attractions. Certainly beats all
Disney's attractions. Also, wanted to thank you the great customer
experience you gave us. You were able to pass on to my parents and
grandparents your passion for ballooning that you have cultivated
during so many years. I can't wait to take my daughter on one of your
flights for her 5th year-old birthday. With your warm camaraderie and
your excellence in flying balloons, I have no doubt that she will be
in safe hands. Jeff you're the number one attraction in Orlando and
also the best kept secret !
Apopka FL USA
Yes I have flown with you!
I have flown with others and you are the
April 29 2012
AMAZING! My husband was nervous but after today even he would
recommend the experience. The entire staff is knowledgeable and make
it a lasting memory. I wouldn't dare fly with anyone else (and I
have before today). Capt Kim is remarkable. There is no doubt that
when I talk about this day, people will want to sign up and enjoy
the experience! Thank you Jeff and staff for an amazing, safe and
memorable experience. It is obvious these people have a passion.
Wish I could fly every day...
Thompson Aire Pilot
Captain Jeff A. Thompson
Capt Jeff's story is a long and wonderful history of passion and pride
sprinkled with adventure and national accolades.
Jeff first saw a hot air balloon at the united states national
championships in Indianola Iowa in 1973. He was infatuated by these
peaceful and beautiful flying machines. He took a photo of a balloon out
of a magazine and began to build balloons out of tissue paper and
cellophane tape. At one time he built a tissue paper balloon large enough
to carry his bicycle.
By the time he was 15 he had signed up for flight lessons and just before
his 16th birthday he was allowed to SOLO! At that time he did not even
have a drivers license. At age 17 he purchased his first balloon and took
his parents and brothers and sister for their first balloon flight.
At age 17 the young Capt Thompson began to fly his balloon in competition.
His first year out he finished in the top 10 in the state of Iowa. By the
time he was 18 he won the regional championships the south west Iowa
professional championships and took 3rd in the united states national
championships. At that time he was considered to be one of the 5 best in
the entire country.
He later went on to design and build advertising balloons that are now
commonly used across the united states for Grand Openings and other displays.
Jeff spent time flying
corporate balloons around the U.S.
After about 6 years as a flight instructor and flying passengers he decided that passenger
flights was the best way to share his passion with everyone and began to
fly rides full time.
Captain Jeff A Thompson has been flying passengers for over 30 years and
has been a full time ride pilot for over 20 years. He has been an
instructor for the FAA (federal aviation administration) as well as the
chief pilot for several large ride operations around the country. He has
flown balloons as small as a one man balloon without a basket to as large
as a 16 passenger balloon containing 240 thousand cubic feet of air. He
currently operates balloons that holds between 4 and 6 passengers and
operates 7 days a week in the Disney World area of Orlando Florida.
Captain Thompson is the current reigning Florida State Hot Air Balloon
(2007, 2009, 2010, 2011 & 2012 state champ!)
Captain Thompson finished the 2011
competition year ranked #10 in all of the United States.
BFA National Ranking.
He is rated as a Distinguished Aeronaut level 8 by the
Balloon Federation of America. One of only 32 in the entire United
*DA8 is the HIGHEST
pilot achievement level
obtainable by the Balloon Federation of America.
www.bfa.net for more info
Each flight he blends his
enthusiasm for flight with his vast flight experience and precision
control. Throwing in a dash of his knowledge as an instructor to create an
experience you will simply be astounded with and can't wait to share with
your friends and family.
Captain Thompson also hand picks all the professional pilots who fly for
TA. No matter what pilot you are assigned to on your flight date
you can rest assured they come with the full confidence of Captain Jeff
Thompson himself. Have a look at our
"Guest Book" and see what people say
even about the other pilots.
There are other choices of people and companies to fly with but those
who have flown with others will admit they would always come back to, and
recommend, Thompson Aire!
Don't take our word for it. Here is exactly what our past
passengers say about their flight and experience with Thompson AIRE.
Dear Captain Thompson and crew, My husband and I
went on a hot air balloon flight this morning in Hertfordshire,
England. We flew with virgin Balloons. The flight was very good and
beautiful. Looking at the landscape and the affluence of the country
side was breathtaking. However, I MISSED YOU LOT SO MUCH. Our first
balloon flight was with you in Florida on the 18th of March, 2004.
It was our wedding anniversary and it was magic. The teams
professionalism and humour made the whole experience special. Well,
my flight today missed a few things and that is why i have been
prompted to write to let you know you are in a class of your own It
was a lovely experience but it lacked a lot of humour, laughter and
definitely your lovely moustache.
I wish you all the best and i hope you maintain your excellent
standards of customer care.
See you in the future.
Eunice and Adrian Sirkett.
I just wanted to touch base with you and let you know how
disappointed I was that you did not come to Iowa for the Balloon
Classic this year. My flight with you last summer was phenomenal!!
(I'm the one that cried when we landed)!
My ballooning bug was fed yet again this morning as I had another
flight. It was wonderful, but nothing compared to flying with you!
My pilot did a good job, with the experience he has gained so far.
We landed at 12 MPH and drug for about 30 feet. I didn't like it as
much as our feather soft landing last year, but found it a bit
thrilling. All I could do was hunker down in the basket and giggle.
My pilot this morning probably thought I was a crazy woman!!
Anyway, I just wanted you to know you're missed in Indianola. I hope
to have the opportunity to fly with you again some time.
Healing Arts Massage Therapy
For more input from our past passengers we encourage you to visit the
or view the TA Guest Book.