Sean D. Tucker’s Oracle Challenger III to Hang at NASM

The bright orange biplane will go on display at the National Air and Space Museum’s new “We All Fly” exhibit.

Oracle Challenger III inverted ribbon cut
Tucker flew his final inverted ribbon cut in the Oracle Challenger III at the Wings Over Houston air show last week.Suresh Atapattu

Sean D. Tucker flew his last performance in his bright orange Oracle Challenger III—a custom built 400-horsepower aerobatic biplane—last week. The airplane is now officially becoming a piece of aviation history.

The Oracle Challenger III will be hung in the “We All Fly” exhibit, currently under construction at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. The exhibit was made possible by a $10 million donation from the Thomas W. Haas Foundation and is expected to open in 2021. “Sean Tucker’s aircraft will no doubt inspire future pilots and aviation professionals through the story of his amazing career,” said Ellen Stofan, the John and Adrienne Mars director of the NASM.

The Oracle Challenger III will be suspended at the entrance to the gallery, which will be specifically dedicated to general aviation. Aircraft such as the Cessna 180, Cirrus SR22 and Lear Jet will also be on display along with educational exhibits and videos.

Tucker has flown the Oracle Challenger III for the past eight years in an aerial ballet often narrated by the highly energized pilot himself. During this past year, Tucker performed in a two-ship aerobatic “sky dance” with aerobatic pilot and Reno air racer Jessy Panzer, flying the Oracle Extra 300L. As Team Oracle, Tucker and Panzer flew their last 2019 show at the Wings Over Houston air show. While there is no official announcement about what Tucker will fly in the 2020 season, he is not ready to drop the throttle yet.