Air Race News

High-tech F-22 Raptor and top female aerobatic pilot headline 2014 National Championship Air Races entertainment lineup
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July. 16, 2014

High-tech F-22 Raptor and top female aerobatic pilot headline 2014 National Championship Air Races entertainment lineup

On the heels of a record-setting Pylon Racing Seminar, the National Championship Air Races have released its full entertainment lineup for the 51st event to be held Sept. 10-14 at the Reno Stead Airfield. In addition to an expected full field of elite race pilots in the world’s fastest motorsport, military demonstration teams and several of the world’s top aviation performers will ‘race on’ to awe hundreds of thousands of aviation enthusiasts and curious spectators. This year, in addition to the already announced F-22 Raptor, L-39 Patriot Jet Team and top female aerobat Melissa Pemberton, will be Breitling stunt pilot and world aerobatic champion David Martin, Mark Peterson and his Alpha Jet, the famed John Klatt Airshows team featuring the Jack Link’s Jet Waco “Screamin’ Sasquatch,” the poignant Heritage Flight, a UAV drone demonstration (pending FAA approval) and the Bentley Car demonstration and race. This year’s event will also mark the return of the wildly-popular car drop, where a car is actually dropped from a helicopter flying high above the race course.

Read more here: http://airrace.org/for_media/

June. 10, 2014

Full list of Pylon Racing Seminar Participants now available

To see the list click the link below:
http://bit.ly/1oS36AZ

May. 14, 2014

Record number of planes expected for Air Races rookie school in June

RENO, Nev. – The Reno Air Racing Association announced this week that a record number of pilots and planes will take to the famed Reno Air Race course for the first time in 2014 during the 17th annual National Championship Air Races Pylon Racing Seminar (PRS), June 11-14. PRS, or ‘Rookie School,’ is the only chance for rookie pilots to qualify for the September race and offers an opportunity for all race pilots to test their aircraft and practice their racing skills. This year’s PRS, which is not open to the public, features more than 70 airplanes and 90 participants, eclipsing the previous record of 63 planes in 2007.

“PRS formally kicks off the anticipation and countdown for the September event and it’s the first time you get to hear the thunder of an unlimited engine, the roar of a jet engine and the friendly competitive chatter of pilots,” said Joey Scolari, member of the Reno Air Racing Association (RARA) board of directors. “To have such an overwhelming turnout of pilots and planes is a pretty good indication that this year’s National Championship Air Races will be one of our biggest, yet.”

All new pilots must attend PRS and complete and pass all classroom-based course work before flying in supervised test runs of the course. After successfully passing both segments, rookies will be given approval by flight instructors to race in the September event. Though mandatory for rookies, RARA, in conjunction with the individual racing class organizations, opens PRS to all pilots offering them practice time, education, training and certification. PRS helps ensure that racers compete with maximum competitiveness and safety at the National Championship Air Races.

“While the importance of PRS to pilot and spectator safety cannot be overstressed, it also builds excitement and provides us with an opportunity to get our volunteers and staff ready for September,” said Scolari. “We have a lot of exciting changes in store for this year’s event and PRS also allows us an important onsite opportunity to start our final preparations.”

The 51st annual National Championship Air Races is the world’s premier air racing event. The races kick off Wednesday, Sept. 10, and will continue through Sunday, Sept. 14, at the Reno-Stead Airport. Tickets for the show are available by phone at 775-972-6663 or online at www.airrace.org. For more information on the National Championship Air Races, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

April. 30, 2014

Wildly-popular Patriots Jet Team returns to the National Championship Air Races this September

After a thrilling and captivating performance at the 50th National Championship Air Races in 2013, the Reno Air Racing Association (RARA) announced the L-39 Patriots Jet Team is the latest of a number of highly-acclaimed acts to take to northern Nevada’s star-studded skies at the 2014 event. The Patriots Jet Team joins the awe-inspiring F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team and groundbreaking aerobatic pilot Melissa Pemberton as the aviation entertainment headliners for this year’s revamped event, which will include concerts and a more festival-like atmosphere.

“The Patriots Jet Team represents the skill, courage and precision that are associated with the top military demonstration teams in North America,” said Mike Major, chairman of the RARA board of directors. “We received such tremendous feedback from our fans after last year’s performances that it was a top priority for us to bring them back as we ‘race on’ in 2014.”

The L-39 Patriots Jet Team will delight audiences with its display of stunning aerobatic maneuvers, including the signature “Tail Slide,” in which the aircraft slides backwards toward the ground, a move unique to the Patriots. The Patriots Jet Team is a civilian six-ship jet team who are all former military pilots who have flown for the Blue Angels, Thunderbirds and Canadian Snowbirds. In addition to its dazzling moves, the Patriots Jet Team is known for painting the skies with its computerized red, white and blue smoke system.

“We are confident that this year’s event will incorporate the very best in racing and entertainment from previous years, like the Patriots Jet Team and the F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team, along with some new, world-class performers and exciting amenities that will create an event unlike any that has come before it,” said Major.

The 51st annual National Championship Air Races is the world’s premier air racing event. The races kick off Wednesday, Sept. 10, and will continue through Sunday, Sept. 14, at the Reno-Stead Airport. Tickets for the show are available by phone at 775-972-6663 or online at www.airrace.org. For more information on the National Championship Air Races, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

April. 22, 2014

Youngest-ever female member of U.S. Aerobatic Team to make her Reno debut in 2014

One of the world’s top female pilots will be gracing the northern Nevada skies for the first time as this year’s National Championship Air Races ‘race on’ Sept. 10-14. Melissa Pemberton, a world-renowned aerobat and the youngest-ever female member of the United States Unlimited Aerobatic Team, will bring her Edge540 Aircraft and her exhilarating stunt routine to the Reno-Stead Airfield this September. Pemberton joins the F-22 Raptor Demonstration team as performers that have been announced for the event’s 51st year.

“The National Championship Air Races has a 50-year legacy of attracting the very top racers and entertainers from all over the world,” said Mike Major, chairman of the Reno Air Racing Association (RARA) board of directors. “Melissa is simply awe-inspiring and we couldn’t be more excited to have her perform at this year’s event. We’re also confident that she’ll appeal to a younger and more diverse audience.”

A native of Pittsburgh, Penn., the 30-year-old aerobat comes from a family of pilots and performers, having learned to fly from her grandmother and grandfather. Pemberton became a private pilot in 2002 and flew in her first airshow in 2004. She quickly established herself as one of the country’s best young pilots, winning several regional aerobatic competitions and earning the title of Collegiate Aerobatic Champion in 2004 and 2006 and Third Place Overall in Intermediate at the 2004 U.S. National Championships. She was a member of the “Stars of Tomorrow 2005,” sponsored by legendary aerobatic pilots Sean Tucker and Michael Goulian, doing solo and formation aerobatic demonstrations at major airshows throughout the country. Pemberton also studied aeronautical science and mathematics at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University and is a champion rock climber.

RARA also announced, last week, an exciting new competition for its loyal fanbase that will culminate in the first-ever, Official National Championship Air Race Calendar. Each week, through mid-July, fans will be invited to post photos to the RARA Facebook page as part of its popular Photo Friday postings. One photo will be selected each week and announced the following Wednesday for inclusion in the 2015 calendar. The calendar will be sold online and at the event with all proceeds directly benefitting the not-for-profit event.

“We are committed to evolving this world-class event to create a more robust and enhanced experience for our fans and participants,” said Major. “We are also working to further engage our fans in feeling like this is their event and will introduce more ways, like the calendar, for them to express their passion for air racing.”

The 51st annual National Championship Air Races is the world’s premier air racing event. The races kick off Wednesday, Sept. 10, and will continue through Sunday, Sept. 14, at the Reno-Stead Airport. Tickets for the show are available by phone at 775-972-6663 or online at www.airrace.org. For more information on the National Championship Air Races, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

April. 2, 2014

F-22 Raptor to make return appearance at 51st National Championship Air Races

A sign of its steadfast commitment to bringing the very best aviators, performers and demonstration teams to the historic National Championship Air Races, the Reno Air Racing Association (RARA) announced the awesome and ultra-high-tech F-22 Raptor as one of the event headliners in 2014. Just a year after having its performance cancelled for the historic 50th event due to the federal government sequestration, the wildly popular F-22 Raptor will be making just its third Reno Air Race appearance when it performs Sept. 10 – 14 at the Reno-Stead Airfield.

“Truly, the F-22 Raptor is one of the most impressive fighter planes in the world and its speed, turning capability and creativity make for a heart-pounding and exciting performance,” said Mike Major, chairman of the RARA board of directors. “Words will never do the F-22 justice; the only way to fully grasp what this plane can do is to see it in action.”

The F-22 Raptor employs a state-of-the-art thrust system that allows the aircraft to pivot 360 degrees in all directions at nearly any speed, seemingly defying the fundamental principles and forces that govern flight. The Raptor, which can do everything from making bank turns to hovering sideways in mid-air, is an unheralded combination of stealth and shear power and it represents RARA’s determination to substantially increase the military presence at the annual event.

“While the last remaining air racing event of its kind in the world, the National Championship Air Races is also an annual homage to the United States military and the all of the brave men and women who have taken to the skies in service of their country,” said Major. “Last year, while it was a worthy celebration of our first 50 years, the presence of the military was sorely missed. We are working diligently to ensure that, this year, the equipment and personnel of the Armed Forces are represented the way our fans have become accustomed to.”

March. 25, 2014

An open letter to our fans, our volunteers, our pilots and our community

To our fans, our pilots, our volunteers and our community,

After such an amazing 50th event this past September, we couldn’t be more excited to look ahead towards the next 50 years of the National Championship Air Races. Last year was an overwhelming and poignant success with fans from all over the world joining us to revel in this historic aviation celebration. As the last air racing event of its kind, the Reno Air Racing Association is committed to preserving and growing this great event and developing the next generation of Air Race fans.

Undoubtedly, the last few years have created many emotional, financial and organizational challenges. With the support of our fans, our pilots, our volunteers and our community, we have met those challenges and are now positioned to succeed far into the future.

As many of you know, over the last few months, we have revamped our organizational structure and revised our bylaws to allow us to operate more effectively, more efficiently and more prudently. Furthermore, buoyed by the support of our sponsors and our staff and, having recently secured the required insurance at a significantly lower cost than the previous two years, we are financially positioned for a prosperous 2014 and beyond.

However, in order for the National Championship Air Races to achieve its greatest potential and to captivate mainstream attention, we are looking to our entire Air Race family to help us spread the word. This year, we’re excited to announce that, in the same vein of our recent changes, we will engage on a communications and marketing campaign that encourages and even requires interaction from fans and participants all over the world.

We have many new and exciting changes and additions for this year’s event and we will be announcing them frequently through traditional media and our digital and social media channels. It’s time that this event became a true festival of flight. With that in mind, this year, we will be adding concerts, expanding the number of races, increasing the incredible display of military aircraft and creating some exciting, innovating and interactive experiences for our fans.

Again, all of these details and schedules will be released regularly over the coming weeks and months. We are pleased to make our first announcement and that is that our reigning Unlimited Breitling Gold Champion, Steve Hinton, will be returning to defend his crown in the famed P-51 Mustang Voodoo. Undoubtedly, as it did last year, this will set up for some very interesting and intense racing.

The National Championship Air Races is unlike any event in the world and, truly, the emotions and passion associated with this event simply cannot be described. This year, we’re inviting you to rally with us as we ‘RACE ON’ into the future of air racing. Tickets are on sale now for this year’s National Championship Air Races, Sept. 10-14. For the latest updates and information, visit our website at www.airrace.org, make sure to find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Thank you and stay tuned for our first announcement on our performers for 2014 next week.

Sincerely,
The Reno Air Racing Association Board of Directors

December. 31, 2013

2014 Race Tickets On Sale March 5th

On March 5th tickets will go on sale for the 2014 National Championship Ar Races!
You can purchase tickets through our website or by calling our office. If you are interested in Box Seats, please call us at 775-972-6663.
We look forward to welcoming our fans in September to "The World's Fastest Motorsport."