Kāpiti Aero Club


Kāpiti Aero Club is staffed by a professional and committed team of instructors and administrators. We are available 7 days a week to help you achieve your flying goals. The club is governed by a diverse executive committee.

Chief Pilot - B-CAT (H) Instructor

Grant Twaddle

Grant has a wide range of experience, ranging from strip flying in the Marlborough Sounds through to IFR multi-engine offshore operations. His flying has provided him with wonderful opportunities to see many parts of the world and fly with some very talented and capable pilots. This extensive flying background will ensure any helicopter student receives comprehensive practical flight training.

Principal Instructor (Fixed Wing) - B-CAT (A) Instructor

Scott McPake

Scott has had an interest in aviation ever since his Dad gave him a trial flight voucher with Kapiti Aeroclub as a teenager.

Since then he has done some flying with Air Cadets before completing his CPL/MEIR with Nelson Aviation College. In 2016 he came back to KDAC to complete his C-Cat Instructor Rating and join the instructing team here at the club.

Since starting with the club Scott has gained his B-Cat Instructor Rating.

B-CAT (A) Instructor

Ben Gesterkamp

Ben completed his MEIR & CPL at the International Aviation Academy of New Zealand in Christchurch and a further C-Cat Instructor Rating at the New Zealand International Commercial Pilot Academy in Whanganui, so he has experience flying all over New Zealand.

Since starting with the club Ben has gained his B-Cat Instructor Rating.

In his spare time, you will undoubtedly find Ben cheering on the Black Caps or watching any other sport that takes his fancy.

B-CAT (A) Instructor

Diego Acevedo

Diego has aviation running deep in his DNA, being the third generation of pilots in his family. He started his pilot training in 2008, before moving to New Zealand, and holds pilots licenses in Canada and Guatemala. After moving to Wellington he gained his C-Cat Instructor Rating at the club.

When Diego isn’t flying, he is looking after his chickens, curating exotic plants, traveling, and enjoying time with friends. He loves sharing his knowledge and watching people’s passion for flying grow alongside his.

B-CAT (A) Instructor

Josh Hay

Josh did much of his flight training with us, and completed his C-Cat Instructor Rating in 2014; later that year he came onboard as an instructor with the club. He subsequently achieved his B-Cat Instructor Rating.

Although Josh is heavily involved with instrument training, he enjoys strip flying and is also endorsed to teach Terrain and Weather Awareness.

Outside of the club Josh is kept very busy with a young family including two boys who keep him young at heart. Big hobbies of his are diving, hill climbing and enjoying good food with friends and family.


Andy Cardno

Since a very young age Andy has had an interest in aviation, having grown up next to the Wigram Airforce base in Christchurch.

Andy completed his CPL with us in 2008; he also holds an MEIR and has gained his B-Cat Instructor Rating since starting at the club. Andy is a keen aerobatic pilot and loves to share his knowledge.

If he's not at the club, you'll find Andy spending time with his family or supporting his local McDonalds.

C-CAT (A) Instructor

Trinity Hart

Trinity completed her CPL/MEIR/C-Cat at Air Hawkes Bay in 2021. She has since joined the aero club as a C-Cat instructor working weekends.

When Trinity isn't flying she can be found at the gym, watering her many houseplants, and feeding her iced coffee addiction!

C-CAT (A) Instructor

Ashton Young

Ashtons interest in aviation began as a child where he would watch agriculture planes fly over the farm he grew up on.

Completing his Bachelor of Aviation degree at Massey in 2018, he further gained his flight instructor rating at KDAC. Allowing him to pass on his passion to other aspiring aviators.

While he isn't flying, you'll find him working away on vintage Volkswagens, camping, and 4 wheel driving.


Liz Jackson

Liz is our Office Manager who joined us in early 2012 and is the first point of contact when you come into the office. She thoroughly enjoys working with the club's friendly instructors and strives to make club members feel welcome, especially those new to flying.

Liz likes joining in club activities and weekends away, and in her spare time enjoys walking, biking, backgammon and reading. Liz lives locally and feels that the Kāpiti Districts Aero Club is a great asset to the region. She puts in extra effort to promote the club and is proud to see it going from strength to strength.

Kāpiti Aero Club is open 7 days a week, 8am-5pm. Call us on 04 902 6536 or drop into our clubrooms to discuss your aviation requirements.