David Mackay

Quotes
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By my mid-30s, I just thought, 'This is not going to happen. I am never going to become an astronaut in the U.K.'
For Virgin Galactic's customers, it is transportation to the most amazing experience of their lives. I very much look forward to sending some Scots into space.
From a very early age, I wanted to fly aeroplanes.
I am not going to pretend that flying a spaceship will be as safe as getting in a 747 with four engines for a flight across the Atlantic.
I can still remember them wheeling the black and white TV sets into our classroom at school so we could watch the men landing on the Moon, and that obviously had a huge impact. I later found out those people flying Apollo were ex-military test pilots, so I decided to join the Air Force and become a test pilot.
I cannot wait to get up there and experience space travel for the first time. It will be a dream come true. Time ;Travel
I do have a bit of a fear of heights. But I don't get scared of heights when I am flying a plane.
I have watched SS2 evolve over the years into an incredible vehicle that is going to open up space to more people than ever before.
I thought any chance I had of space travel would be military or government-controlled. Travel
I want to get to the moon. I want to go to Mars.
I was a frustrated astronaut all my life. I grew up at a time when space seemed to have no boundaries, and lots of us presumed humans would be living on the moon and landing on Mars. Life ;Time
I was brought up in the north of Scotland, and where I lived was so lowly populated, it was used as a low-flying area by the Air Force, so lots of exciting aircraft used to fly over my village.
I watched the moon landing as a boy, and I thought that was the most exciting thing ever, going into space, orbiting Earth and exploring other planets. That looked fantastic.
I would say if you do have ambitions, don't just wait around. Go out and make yourself as well-qualified as possible so you can take that rare opportunity when it comes along.
In any aircraft you fly, you always think about what can go wrong, and you plan for it in advance. You always have back-up plans.
It's very sad that there's going to be a hiatus in manned space flight from the U.S. The Shuttle was a fantastic, hugely complex vehicle. It was inevitable it would come to an end, but this is the opportunity for the commercial world to get involved. As the Shuttle era ends, another window of opportunity opens.
I've always hankered after going into space and walking on the moon and Mars. I did want to be an astronaut, and had there been a manned space flight programme in the U.K., I would have been knocking on the door.
I've been lucky enough to have flown some very interesting aircraft in the past, but SpaceShipTwo is far and away the most exciting of them all.
Not long after I got my test pilot qualification, I realised there was no manned space flight programme in the U.K., and there was unlikely to be one.
We go up just into space - space is most commonly accepted to be 100 kilometres above the earth's surface, and we go up just beyond that to about 350,000 ft.
When I was 12, I saw the Apollo moon landings, and I thought that was really fantastic and exciting and thought, 'That's what I want to do.'