Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Preparing for Another Great Year at Reno!

Four years ago, I wrote a column for June about the State of the Races. At that time, we were still struggling with the aftermath of the crash in 2011. The NTSB presented their recommendations and we were wading through them, trying to figure out what to do next.

Changes had to be made. Modifications had to be made. Operations needed to change. What else did we have to do to keep going for another year, another five years, or another ten years?
Reading through those old columns from that time, I realize how much we have been through and how many people were part of the solution. We are still here. We are growing and things are looking up!

Pylon Racing Seminar in June

PRS is scheduled to take place in Mid-June and we have a record number of attendees. Each class will have a nice turnout, but the Sport Class is the winner with 54 people and 47 airplanes expected to attend.  At this rate, the Sport Class will need another week added on to the event just to keep up with the demand!

What an amazing success story. The Sport Class started out in 1998, sponsored by Lancair at the time. Dave Morss won the first several years flying the Lancair Company Plane. The Class was run well and really attracted a great group of people. To go from those early days, to having the potential of 60-70 racing applications for 2016, that is an amazing success.

They are not exactly sitting on their laurels either. The Sport Class has devised a new and interesting racing segment which they are pitching to RARA and to the FAA. There will be a demo/practice of the new segment at PRS – so hopefully they will get clearance and I’ll be able to tell you more about it – after it’s signed off by the governing bodies.

Jeff Lavelle is BACK in the World’s Fastest Glasair
Thanks to 20West:Bruce Croft

Otherwise, their Medallion and Bronze races may be on the T6 course – to keep the action closer and the fans attention focused on the racers. The Gold race will likely be 325-400 mph – especially with Jeff Lavelle coming back, John Parker back in the hunt for his repeat. This is going to be great!

The Jet Class has 8 entries for PRS and is still growing like crazy. Look for new wing tips and new pilots – and even new airplanes.  

Biplanes have at least 6 attendees for PRS. Again, some new pilots and some new aircraft – and some people and planes we know and remember are returning.

Unlimited Class has several Rookies coming to PRS – and one boomerang (someone who attended PRS, never raced – and is back). The latest word is Strega may be taking the year off, but Tiger’s new Young Gun will likely be at PRS in Czech Mate! Yes!

Tiger’s Young Gun is a great guy named Jay Consalvi. I wrote about Jay in 2010 when he attended PRS in Doug Mathews old Corsair. He did great, but ended up not racing that year – or since.
Jay was one of the main characters in the movie Speed and Angels. If you haven’t seen the movie, you should look for it! It’s considered to be the Real Life Top Gun and Jay is a rock star in this movie!

I know he’s been flying Strega and Czech for several months and should be a great addition to the races. It looks like there will be a bunch of Yaks at PRS this year and maybe a Mustang or two?

Jay Consalvi at PRS in 2010
Thanks to Ken Linde

Formula 1 made some changes last year – among them putting Phil Goforth in charge of building their pilot roster. The next thing you know, they have 15 Rookies coming to PRS. He has been on the phone talking to everyone who ever thought about flying an F1, those who own F1s and haven’t raced before and everyone in between. Expect a lot of excitement around this class in September.

Final thoughts – although just 4 years ago – we thought we may have been done racing in the high desert outside of Reno, NV, we are back and we are growing and things look GREAT!
I can’t wait to hear all the stories from PRS and start getting ready to see my September Family in just a few months!

Until then,
Fly Low.. Fast and Turn LEFT!

Marilyn Dash
Ruby Red Racing

The Pylons are waitingThanks to 20W: Bruce Croft