Second Location Added – Lone Star Executive Airport

by HPA · August 13, 2014

High Performance Aviation, LLC unveils new office at Lone Star Executive Airport in Conroe, Texas.

Houston’s premier provider of customized flight training and pilot services expands operations into Lone Star Executive Airport, serving The Woodlands, North Houston and Conroe.

Conroe, TX August 13, 2014 – High Performance Aviation, LLC, Houston’s premier provider of quality flight training and pilot services for aircraft owners, is pleased to announce its expansion into The Woodlands/Conroe area. Along with its existing location at Sugar Land Regional Airport, High Performance Aviation now has two convenient locations to serve the Greater Houston area. In its 5th year, High Performance Aviation continues to raise the standard for aircraft training and customer service by opening a new office at the beautiful Galaxy FBO at Lone Star Executive Airport.

The company was founded by its current president, Brandon Ray. “Our new location at Lone Star Executive Airport provides convenience to our clients in The Woodlands, North Houston, and Conroe. The facilities at Galaxy FBO feature expansive hangar space, an on-site Black Walnut Cafe and excellent service for our clients. The airport has an air traffic control tower and multiple runways with instrument approaches, which makes flying in and out of Conroe easy and seamless. Houston is continuing to grow and this new location allows us to better serve our growing client base.”

Lone Star Executive Airport (KCXO) is located just 15 minutes north of Houston’s iconic business district, The Woodlands. Also a mere 35 minutes from downtown Houston and its many attractions. An untouched gem in a very busy metropolis, Lone Star Executive is a clear and efficient choice for all aspects of aviation services. High Performance Aviation selected the location based on its increased need for growth and proximity to the numerous amenities of The Woodlands and Conroe.

With thousands of hours of experience, the instructors at High Performance Aviation understand and cater to the flight training needs of aircraft owners. Specializing in Cessna, Columbia and Cirrus aircraft with Garmin and Avidyne avionics, the choice for top notch training and expertise is clear. In addition to training, High Performance Aviation offers aircraft sales, brokerage, and acquisition consultation services for piston and light turbine aircraft.

To learn more about High Performance Aviation, LLC and its services, visit


About High Performance Aviation, LLC
Founded in 2009, High Performance Aviation, LLC was started by 3-time Master Instructor, Brandon Ray, whose vision for an efficient and hassle-free training environment continues to define the company. Over the past five years, High Performance Aviation has focused on providing aircraft owners with unparalleled service and aviation expertise.

Brandon Ray
High Performance Aviation

How it Started

One of my best friends in high school, (Doug Gray) was a private pilot. He offered to take me up for a flight in a 1967 Cessna 150, N6228S. We took off from Calhoun, Georgia, and he took me on a scenic tour of the area, I was hooked. I later found out that my English teacher, (Jan Haluska) was also a flight instructor and the school was offering a ground school course the next year, which he taught, along with flight training with the goal of becoming a private pilot. I managed to talk my dad into funding the training, at the time the total cost was right around $500. Cessna 150 rental rates where $12 an hour, and the 172 we used for cross country was $15 an hour including fuel.

Training Begins

It started August of 1977. The fall semester rolls around, and I am enrolled in ground school, and if memory serves me, we met twice a week. First came the paperwork for my student pilot certificate, which at the time was included with the 3rd class medical. I loved ground school, especially learning navigation, plotting courses on the sectional, again this was before iPads and GPS, so we did a lot of dead reckoning and VOR navigation for cross countries. At the end of the course, I made an 83% on the Private Pilot written exam, remember this was before we had the question-and-answer books that on future test I would consume before taking a written.

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The fun really began on August 22, 1977, it was my first flight. To my surprise we used the same Cessna 150, N6228S that my friend Doug Gray had taken me for a ride in. The Cessna 150 had a standard VFR instrument panel, with one NAV/COM, and one VOR CDI. No intercom, so no headset, at the time I didn’t know what I was missing. I didn’t get my first headset until I started my instrument training in 2003. I was a big guy, I was 6’ 4” and weighed 245 lbs. but I do not remember being uncomfortable in the 150 even with the instructor in the right seat.

First flight lasted .8 hours, and we accomplished orentation, shallow turns, stability, and effects of flight controls. Over the next few months we added steep 720’s, slow flight, stalls, turns around a point, S-turns, emergencies, landings, (short field, soft field and normal).


At this point I want to talk about a training experience that still stands out. We were close to solo and were practicing takeoffs and landings. Turning base to final Jan got very upset at the way I was cross controlling the aircraft. Cross control is when you are in, say a left turn, and use opposite rudder to line the nose up with the runway. So, he had me depart the pattern and head east to the practice area, and climbing up to 5500 feet MSL, he had me slow down to just above stalling speed, start a left shallow turn and add right rudder. As the airplane stalled I had the strangest sensation, no roller coaster has ever come close, instead of blue sky in the windscreen I was looking at brown ground, and as far as I could tell we were upside down, through the terror of the moment Jan talked me out of the spin, controls neutral, oposite rudder, pull slowly out of the dive. As we leveled off he asked me what altitude we were at, as I remember it was around 2,800 feet MSL. Then he asked me what would happen if I experenced this on base to final in the traffic pattern. The answer was obvious, I would be a pile of wreckage off the end of the runway with a very short-lived aviation career. Needless to say this cured my cross-control tendencies.

Another training event the sticks out in my mind was the first time we did takeoffs and landings at the High School runway. The runway was 1,500 feet long, not sure of the width, but it seems like we had about 5 feet on each side of the wheels when on the center line of the runway. Landing from the south you also had to go between a cutout in the trees to be able to stop in time on the runway. After getting confortable landing here every runway since seemed huge. I remember landing at Chattanooga (KCHA) on a night cross country and commenting to Jan, that I felt like I could of landed sideways on the runway, it felt that large.

Very soon after this I started wearing old shirts to all my flight lessons, the reason for this occurred on February 8, 1978. The lesson that day was stalls, takeoffs and Landing. As we were taxing back in Jan told me it was time for my first solo. I was very excited, and after some last minute advice from Jan, including watch for floating on landing the plane will be light with him not in the right seat, complete 3 takeoffs and landings to a full stop. It was a blast, and at the end of my shirt was shorter in the back because Jan cut the tail out of it signed and dated my solo [an aviation tradition]. Total flight time accumulated on the day of my solo was 18.1 hours. I was now officially a pilot with solo priveleges.

In my next article I start cross country training, when Jan decided that it would be best accomplished this in the 172. Checking out in N5970R was like moving into a 747, this started a love affair with one of my faviriote planes to date. Since this time I have flown over 900 hours in many different models of the 172 and feel like I am stepping into an old friend every time.

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