Thom Richard Wins Air Race 1 World Cup

Three-race series concludes at the Reno Air Races.

Thom Richard Air Race 1 Winner
Thom Richard Air Race 1 Winner

Last week's National Championship Air Races at the Reno-Stead Airport included the final race for the inaugural Air Race 1 World Cup series, with formula one airplanes going at it in a 5 km closed pylon course. Thom Richard, originally from Sweden, placed at the top of the podium in all three races — in Monastir, Tunisia, on June 4; Lleida, Spain, on June 28 and Reno on September 20 — and hence was the clear winner of the cumulative series.

While Richard was fourth in the final gold race at Reno, with Steve Senegal first, Vito Wypraechtiger second and Elliot Seguin third, he was the fastest of the Air Race 1 participants. A total of 20 pilots from around the world participated in the series. Each competition had at least one day of qualifying and one day of competing in either gold or silver heats based on the qualifying times. Eight pilots raced simultaneously around the course making for an exciting spectator experience.

Richard was racing an airplane called Hot Stuff — an experimental formula one airplane built by Brian Reberry. Richard was also slated to fly in Reno's unlimited class in a P-51 named Precious Metal. That airplane caught fire at a fuel stop as Richard was ferrying the airplane to Reno. Fortunately he managed to evacuate unharmed but the airplane will never race again.

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