Pilots Revealed for 2022 STIHL National Championship Air Races

RENO, Nev. (July 29, 2022) – The field is set for this year’s STIHL National Championship Air Races with 152 planes and 156 pilots racing for glory Sept. 14-18 just north of downtown Reno, Nev.

Hours of preparation, certification and practice brings one of the largest fields of racers to the outdoor event. This year boasts an exciting and competitive Unlimited field with Czech Mate returning from a five-year hiatus to square off against three time reigning champion Dreadnought and fan-favorite Miss America for a chance to raise the Unlimited Gold Trophy. BARDAHL Special, a P51 that finished second overall at the very first Reno Air Races in 1964, while winning the Unlimited finale, will also be returning to Stead for the first time since 1967.

In the Biplane class, fans will get to root for Maj. Michael Brewer, a U.S. Air Force Thunderbird who flew on the demonstration team from 2018–2022 as both Thunderbird No. 3 and Thunderbird No. 4. While performing at the Air Races in 2019 and 2021, Maj. Brewer had the opportunity to experience the unique and exhilarating atmosphere and this year is making his race debut in No. 44, Big Cat.

2022 will also mark the second year of competition for the event’s newest racing class, STOL (Short Take-Off and Landing) Drag, with 21 competitors looking to take home the championship in the sport that has become a social media phenomenon.

Fans will see demonstrations by the U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor, U.S. Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet, U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight, U.S. Navy Legacy Flight, Jim Peitz Aerosports and the GB-1 Gamebird. On the ground fans will get to experience the National Aviation Heritage Invitational, Military Static Display, GRADD-NVBAA STEM Education Discovery Zone, the racing pits where fans can get up close and personal with the pilots, planes and crew, and much more.


0Span CanMark Moodie
3BARDAHL SpecialSteven Coutches
4Sweet & LovelyJeff LaVelle
6Shanty IrishJohn J. Dowd, Jr.
8DreadnoughtJoel Swager
11Miss AmericaBrent Hisey
26Rushin’ ThunderScotty Crandlemire
27Race 27John Maloney
31Speedball AliceDan Vance
44BlondieBrant Seghetti
49Lady BMichael Pfleger
55Man O’ WarKen Gottschall
62BUNNYTom Nightingale
63Pretty PollyPatrick Nightingale
81Wee Willy IIRob Patterson
86Czech MateSherman G. Smoot
114ArgonautDennis Sanders
924924Mark Watt
PACEPaceMakerSteve Hinton
Alt pilots not already flying
John Muszala Jr.


6SluggoMatt Conklin
7Red ThunderAlexandre Eckmann
8Race 8David Sterling
11IVANJerry “Jive” Kerby
23VertigoJoe “Face Punch” Swindel
24Just LuckyPeter A. Zaccagnino
29BallistaAaron Hogue
35HoneywellMichael W. McCauley
54Robin 1Jeff Turney
55Spirit of FreedomNathan Harnagel
61Miss IndependenceCharlie Camilleri
73SubitoCyrill Wipfli
77ViperPeter Stravides
84Tumbling GooseScott Gusakov
129Race 129Mark Davis
139DarkStarDianna Stanger
777Red Thunder IIAlexandre Eckmann
PACE 555PhoenixMichael Steiger
PACEJet PaceJay Obernolte
Alt pilots not already flying
Tammy Camilleri
Rick Vandam
Craig Wilcockson
Mark Johnson


3Smokin’ HotSam Swift
4RubyJeffrey Rose
6Miss DianeDave Holmgren
13Miss GiannaJeffrey Lo
17Yellow FeverEric Zine
18RB SpecialJohn A. D’Alessandris
23Red SquirrelAndrew McVicker
25Shake N’ BakeTommy Suell
29TotoDennis K. Brown
44Big CatMichael Brewer
66Second HandScott Thomson
80The Other WomanDavid Roelofs
84PantherAlan D. Hoover
247Slow RollScott McDonald
314Flip FlopScott Prewitt
711Two Armed BanditTom Marden
11XRed LadyRobert Schmidle
7XRacer XPatrick McGarry

Formula 1

9OutlawScott Holmes
11EndeavorSteve Senegal
17AnniePushkraj “Push” Wagh
21Black JackJoshua Watson
26Fast and EasyPaul E. Newman
27Once MoreKent S. Jackson
31Fraed NaughtSteve Temple
34LimitlessJustin Meaders
39Monkey NinjaJP O’Dell
45QuadNickelJake Speidel
48Atomic PumpkinBlaire Hamilton
52FeistyTrent Woodworth
72The ACME SpecialMatt Moore
74Phat Ass CassShaun Milke
79No Strings AttachedJustin Phillipson
81SleeperCarl Robinson
85Deja VuEric Dienst
99What Airplane Honey?Timothy Cone


2Modo MioVince Walker
3MojoSean E. VanHatten
4Race 4Tom McNerney
6Ramp Rat’s RideJoseph Coraggio
9Cruz MissileMike Rinker
10PracticeTimothy Slater
15Lucky GirlVicky Benzig
22GreenstreakRichard Vandam
24Grimlins CastleJim Rust
28Coming In HotPeter A. Zaccagnino
30One MomentAndrew Findlay
34White LightningJohn Flanagan
36Sport 36Paul Downing
39Race 39Jeff LaVelle
40Race 40Mark Johnson
49Rocket SixBob Mills
51Clas Thunder OneMathias Haid
54Navy 8Steve Senegal
56Bad DingoGeorge Catalano
60Miss’d TuesdayDelton (Dee) Child
66Just Pass’n ThruErnie O. Sutter
67Swiss Thunder IIPeter Balmer
68BowersPonyElliot Seguin
76Race 76Jason Rovey
80Miss Ruby SSkylor Piper
90BreathlessConrad Huffstutler
92Summer HawkDavid Robinson
96Sarah SmileWilliam Christopher McMillian
101General LeeLee Ulrich
130ZebulonOlivier Langeard
150BearDogJohnnie Painter
181GA1Karl Grove
314Phantom RocketScott Prewitt
744Millennial FalconTommy Ishii
777Guardian AngelMatt Ramsey
PACE #17Calamity JaneChristopher Schaich
PAGE #69Pace 69Malte Bruegmann
Alt pilots not already flying
Ralf Aue


3Lawn Mower IIIHarold Stockman
7Yellow ThunderBruce Graham
11GrasshopperDavid Kerley
15The Happy DogBrent Womack
17FlyTruckeeTahoeKevin Sloane
21Red RocketKevin Palmer
22Race 22Ty Ferkin
22The BeastJeff Whiteley
27Spirit of LouisHarry Beaupre
43DocCollin Caneva
44Yee Haw 6Steve Henry
45BumblebeeAndrew Patry
48Devil GirlEddie Sanches
53Race 53Joseph “Joe” Dory
63God Bless John WayneTony Sanches
66Big TunaJon Hakala
73Psycho BillyTim Schelhorn
80ECHOWilliam “Bo” Ellis
84Herf, Heff, El ToroAaron Greear
85LuncaCCathy Page
221ScooterBrian Steck


2Bare EssentialsChris LaFave
4EmilyCraig Meyer
5Big RedGordo Sanders
6Six-CatNick S. Macy
13War CatBrian Reberry
14Barons RevengeChris Rushing
21Play HardBen York III
25VicariousJason Karlin
43Midnight Miss IIIJoel Stinnett
49Miss EllaneousBill Muszala
50AbracadabraVitaly Pecherskyy
66GunslingerVic McMann
69ErosLee Oman
73Miss Humboldt HunnyLoren Marburg
88Radial VelocityJohn S. Lohmar
89Baby BoomerGene McNeely
90UndecidedGreg McNeely
PACEPACE 1Rob Sandberg
Alt pilots not already flying
Michael Pfleger
Rick Siegfried
*Racer list is subject to change.
**Italicized and bolded entries are 2021 Gold Champions. Plane and pilot may be different this year or 2021 champion may not be in the field.

Qualifying begins Monday, Sept. 12 and racing begins Wednesday, Sept. 14. Tickets can be purchased online or by calling 1-800-514-3849 ahead of the event. For more information, visit AirRace.org.

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About the National Championship Air Races       

The National Championship Air Races are held every September just north of Reno by the Reno Air Racing Association, a 501(c)(3). The event has become an institution for Northern Nevada and aviation enthusiasts from around the world with seven racing classes, a large display of static aircraft and several military and civilian flight demonstrations. Independent economic impact studies show that the event generates