Details Emerge for 50th Reno Air Races

** (Photo courtesy of Jim Bryant)**

Details of the 50th edition of the National Championship Air Races, planned for September 11 to 15 at the Reno-Stead Airport outside Reno, Nevada, were released this week. “We are planning for our biggest event yet and are excited to highlight and commemorate 50 years of Air Racing and the sport of aviation as a whole,” said Mike Houghton, president and CEO of the Reno Air Racing Association.

This year’s event has been themed “Mavericks in the Sky.” In addition to the excitement of the races themselves, attendees will have much to be wowed by in part thanks to a “significant” increase in the sponsorship funds provided by its long-time supporter Breitling. The sponsorship includes a three-year commitment to the Reno Air Races. According to a RARA press release, this is the “largest sponsorship commitment in the Reno Air Race’s 49 year history.”

And Breitling is not only supplying some much needed funding. The Swiss watchmaker is also bringing Yves “Jetman” Rossy who will fly his jet-powered carbon-Kevlar wing, which is strapped to the back of his body. The Reno show will be his second public performance in the United States.

Visitors to Reno-Stead will also have a chance to see the Patriots Jet Team, a group of former Blue Angel, Thunderbird and Canadian Snowbird pilots, who will perform their formation aerobatic show, flying six L-39s. Other aerobatic performers include Michael Goulian, Kent Pietsch, Jim Pietz and David Martin. Attendees can also expect to see vintage warbirds and other rare airplanes on the showgrounds.

Pia Bergqvist joined FLYING in December 2010. A passionate aviator, Pia started flying in 1999 and quickly obtained her single- and multi-engine commercial, instrument and instructor ratings. After a decade of working in general aviation, Pia has accumulated almost 3,000 hours of flight time in nearly 40 different types of aircraft.

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