Tuesday, April 1, 2014

A record setting weekend at the 7th annual Texoma 100 Air Race launched the 2014 Sport Air Racing League season

A record number of air racers took to the skies on March 29, 2014 for the 7th Annual Texoma 100 Air Race.  Once again, North Texas Regional hosted the premier event of the Sport Air Racing League season.   The skies were clear and the winds were favorable.

Thirty six race planes with their pilots and copilots and families gathered.  They came from as far as Atlanta, Georgia and Provo, Utah and all points in between.  All aircraft finished the event safely and successfully.  The Fastest of the day was Mike Patey from Provo Utah flying in Unlimited in his Lancair Super Legacy.  This Lancair is powered by a 780 cubic inc  Lycoming engine  that is supercharged.  There are classes for everyone and slowest was rookie racer James Finney from Howe, Texas flying a gorgeous Super Cub.  There is a much coveted award for the slowest entrant and Mr. Finney could not have been more pleased with his racing experience.

The Lancair Super Legacy #32 set a new all
time speed record for the Texoma 100 Air Race.
This plane is raced by builder Mike Patey
from Provo, Utah.  It is the picture of
speed and power.  Credit Jo Hunter
Sport Air Racing League past champions were racing in abundance.  In the Factory division, the 2013 Gold, Silver and Bronze champions flew.    Team Ely, Mike and Linda Ely from Liberty, Texas fly the “Elyminator”.  Their Race #55 is the fastest Grumman Cheetah AA5A on the circuit and walked away with first in class and a bag full of points at the Texoma race.  Their Factory Class 5FX had 6 entries which included a Grumman Traveler from Nashville, Tennessee and local Texas entries in Cessna 172’s. 

The 2013 Silver medal winner, Bobby Bennett flies his sleek Bonanza S35 and won the Factory 1RG class by one minute over Scott Slocum in his Bonanza A36 who squeezed past Henry Punzi in his Mooney Missile by 6 seconds.  Great flying here by all.   The Factory 3FX class was hotly contested with multiple League Champion and the 2013 Bronze champion Annelise Bennett  taking on some new comers.  Her Cessna 182 could not get past a rookie racer in his Cessna 180.   Wariner Stahl from Gainesville, TX is 20 years old and has most of his ratings and is aiming for a career in aviation.  He won the class and was honored with the trophy for the Outstanding Rookie Racers.

The Experimental division saw eight Vans RV’s in the RV Blue class for planes with 360 cubic inch engines.  The 2013 Gold Champion came out with his exhausts blazing and set an amazing speed record for the class.  His speed was not wind assisted as the winds were mostly nullified by the turning course.  Jeff Barnes from Kenosha, Wisconsin flies a Vans RV 6 and turned in 229.24 mph. 
Rookie Racer James Finney is coming up to full power
on the start line of the Texoma 100 Air Race.
His “Texas” Super Cub may have posted the slowest time in
the event but the fun and excitement had by Mr. Finney
made him a winner in all respects.  He even got an extra
and very coveted award given to the slowest entry of the day.
Credit Jo Hunter
That was one amazing run and now has the rest of the RV Blue class racers back at the drawing board.  Jeff was followed by Gary Shelley, the 2012 Gold Champion in his RV8 and Ken Krebaum, the 2013 Bronze Champion in his RV8. 

The Texoma race was excited to have two student pilots flying with their instructors.  Dr. Monica Graham flew a Cessna 150 to second in class and Harrison Talley guided a Glasair III to third in his class.

The Sport Air Racing League has a class for everyone and the Texoma race truly exemplified that.

The 7th annual Texoma race got the 2014 Sport Air Racing season off to a banner start.  Races are scheduled through November across the entire US.   For the first time there will be a multi day annual racing event, the International Air Meet-Championship Cross Country Air Races.  It happens May 23-26, 2014 at Durant, OK.  There are two racing events, a 100 mile and 600 mile race.  Entries are open and there is an April 27, 2014 deadline to register.  

Information about the Sport Air Racing League may be found at www.sportairrace.org.

Information and entry for the Air Meet may be found at www.internationalairmeet.com

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