Has the curtain come down on Centurion?

freight off the 747Cargo Facts’ European editor Alex Lennane reports that troubled all-cargo carrier Centurion Cargo will end US-Europe service, operating its last Miami-Amsterdam flight tomorrow.

Miami-based Centurion expanded its North/South America MD-11F operations by adding the European connection three years ago with five weekly 747-400 freighter frequencies to Amsterdam. However, the carrier has faced mounting legal problems this year, and has grounded its MD-11F fleet. With the cessation of the Amsterdam service, what is left? The answer to that question is: “sister carrier SkyLease Cargo.” SkyLease, which, like Centurion, is privately owned by Alfonso Rey, currently appears likely to continue flying, albeit with a reduced fleet of just two 747-400ERFs.

The combined fleet of the two carriers currently includes two 747-400ERFs, one 747-400F, and ten MD-11Fs. However, lessor AWAS has filed lawsuits claiming unpaid lease rentals on the 747-400F and four of the MD-11Fs. According to flight-tracking service FlightAware, Centurion operated its last MD-11F flight three weeks ago. SkyLease appears to be operating the two 747-400ERFs, but only one MD-11F at present.

Whether SkyLease will, as planned, move to an all 747 fleet is unclear. The two -400ERFs are leased from AerCap, which has not commented on the Centurion/SkyLease situation. Further, before the MD-11F groundings, and the AWAS lawsuits, Centurion/SkyLease was in the process of acquiring another -400ERF (33097, ex-Air France-KLM). That freighter was re-registered as N904AR on 2 September. The “AR” suffix is typically used by Alfonso Rey, but Cargo Facts can find no record of the freighter actually flying for either Centurion or SkyLease yet.

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  1. AirBridgeCargo has returned the ex Air France 747-428ERF (L/N 1361, MSN 33097) to the lessor (Leasehold LLC, Miami Springs, see FAA registry)) and the aircraft is re-registered N904AR for Centurion Air Cargo/Skylease at September 02.
    The aircraft was actual ferried from WSAP/QPG Paya Lebar, Singapore (after maintenance ?) towards KSO/GSO (Piedmont Triad, North Carolina) at September 25
    See : http://www.skyliner-aviation.de/regdb.main?LC=nav4&page=3

    The aircraft will be replaced in the ABC fleet by 747-867F (L/N1505, MSN 60687) to be delivered in October.

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