Air Race News

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Racing

The National Championship Air Races is the last pylon racing event in the world. With seven classes of aircraft racing around the unique course, anywhere from 50 to 500 feet above the ground flying wing-tip to wing-tip at speeds exceeding 500 miles per hour, it is truly an event not to be missed.

 

Biplane Class

The Biplane Class, represented by small, aerobatic aircraft like the Pitts Special, the Mong and the Smith Miniplane, gives pilots a chance to apply their skills to racing on a 3.18-mile course at speeds exceeding 200 mph.

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Photo: Allen Hess


Photo: Tatsuo Sakurai

Formula One Class

Formula One aircraft are all powered by a Continental O-200 engine (the same 100 hp engine used in a Cessna 150). The fastest Formula One aircraft reach almost 250 mph on the 3.12-mile race course in Reno. Many Formula One aircraft are built by the pilots that race them and are a relatively inexpensive way to enjoy the excitement and satisfaction of air racing.

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Sport Class

The Sport Class highlights the new and innovative work being done in the development of high-performance kit-built aircraft. Competition in the Sport Class is fierce, with the rapid introduction of race-driven engine and airframe technology. Sport Class aircraft race on a 6.37-mile course at speeds reaching nearly 350 mph.

/userfiles/files/2013%20Sport%20Registration%20List.pdf


Photo: Allen Hess

 

 

T-6 Class

The T-6 Class features match racing between stock aircraft, including the original T-6 "Texan," the Canadian-built "Harvard," and the US Navy "SNJ" version aircraft. The fastest T-6 aircraft generally post race speeds into the 220-230 mph range on the 5.06-mile course at Reno. Because the aircraft are all of the same type, the T-6 Class provides some of the most exciting racing at Reno, with an emphasis on strategy and pilot skill rather than raw horsepower.

/userfiles/files/2013%20T-6%20Registration%20List.pdf


Photo: Allen Hess


Photo: Jim Larsen

Jet Class

The Jet Class was inaugurated in 2002 as an invitation-only class, featuring match racing with Czech-built Aerovodochody L-39 "Albatros" jets. Today the class has opened the field by adding other aircraft such as Provost, Iskra, L-29 and DeHavilland Vampires. This class truly stands for the "Fastest Motor Sport" with speeds exceeding 500 miles per our.  

/userfiles/files/2013%20Jet%20Registration%20List.pdf      

Unlimited Class

With the exception of very few "scratch-built" aircraft, the Unlimited Class has generally been populated by stock or modified WWII fighters with the P-51 Mustangs, F-8F Bearcats and Hawker Sea Fury being flown most often. The Unlimited Class flies in speeds exceeding 500 mph.

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Photo: Jim Froneberger