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The 1-26 Championships - Day Nine Report

Tuesday, 30 June, began with a little excitement. We had been using three tow planes to get the field airborne.  During the fist wave of launches one of the airplanes lost power on take off roll and had to abort.  It was later discovered that ducting from the air cleaner to the carburetor had collapsed starving the engine for air.  Teams of volunteers spread out to search Moriarty Airport for some new ducting. After about an hour, ducting was located and the tow plane was back into service.  Although the launch was a little slower than usual, all racers were able to make it airborne, but not without some more excitement. The excitement was bought on by a thunderstorm that passed over the field and caused a hold in the middle of the launch. 

This hold meant that the early launches had to hang around for a while until we could get the field airborne  and open the gate. What that meant for Kevin Anderson (192 pilot and 1-26 Association President) was a three hour flight for a total of 14.6 miles; he landed out.  That works out to about 4 miles an hour! 

The task was to be a start from Moriarty, to the interaction of I-40 and Highway 285, to Progresso and back to Moriarty.  Once the race started, the weather began to close in and the Contest Director had to call for a “Safety Finish” due to multiple heavy rain showers in all quadrants.  Nine of the 15 racers were able to complete the shortened task, which meant that six 1-26s landed out.  During the recovery the skies opened up in Moriarty. Even though we need the rain, it presented a challenge to the racers.


Bob von Hellens (244) won the task with an average speed of 49.3 miles per hour for a distance of 102 miles.  Ron Swartz (480) completed the day in second and the Team of Harry Baldwin and Del Bloomquist (144) took third honors. After four days of racing Ron Swartz is still in first place and Bob von Hellens remains in second place.

Tomorrow will be the last race day for the 1-26 National Championships.

Posted: 6/30/2009


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