The first official day of the races was today, Wednesday. The morning sessions were filled with qualifying periods and the afternoon sessions were the first of the heat races for all classes except the unlimiteds.
The Reno Air Race Association has a website at airrace.org. All of the qualifying times and race results will be posted there. I ‘borrowed’ some of the qualifying times and placed them in this pdf file. It shows the top four qualifiers in each class. For those of you interested in the unlimiteds, Steve Hinton (the younger) qualified first Flying Strega at 484.255 mph followed very closely by Will Whiteside flying Voodoo at 479.180 mph.
The races are not the only things going on at Stead. Between the race sessions there are air show acts. When your neck gets tired of looking up all the time you can walk around and look at the commercial exhibits. Hawker-Beechcraft, Piper and Cessna all had large exhibits in the unlimited pit area. I walked around for a little while and snapped some photos I’ll add below. While I’m thinking about it, does anybody have anything specific that they’d like me to check out or to include in a photo? I’ll be out there every day. Just leave a comment and I’ll do my best.
When my legs get tired or I feel sufficiently baked, I head for my hangar, located in the pit area. It’s nice to have someplace out of the sun to sit and enjoy a reasonably-priced beverage or burger. The speakers that are placed throughout the grandstand area to broadcast the announcers comments are powered by an FM signal. I have it playing on my hangar stereo to make sure I don’t miss anything exciting.
Here are the photos I took today. Place your cursor over the photo to see a description, click to get a larger version: