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Mitchell to Host Airventure Cup, World's Largest Cross Country Air Race

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MITCHELL, S.D. - Mitchell will host The AirVenture Cup the World’s Largest Cross Country Air Race. Come see over 50 homebuilt, experimental aircraft on Saturday, July 26th from 8 to 5! Each aircraft is hand built representing 6,000+ hours of work. Watch Fly-bys. Talk with the pilots who hold more than 100 world records for speed, altitude and distance. Over the past 11 years the participants in the AirVenture Cup Race reads like a Who’s Who in aviation. Pilots attending the AirVenture Cup launch in Mitchell are no exception.
Come back on Sunday at 9 a.m. for the race launch.
The event is free and will be located at the Mitchell Airport and Wright Brothers Aviation at 5971 Hangar Rd. in Mitchell.
The AirVenture Cup Race is flown to unite aviation’s rich history with its promising future. The race course has brought together some of aviation’s most historic places, from the home of the Wright Brothers, Dayton, Ohio, to the current home of Sport Aviation, the EAA AirVenture Fy-In Convention in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. This year the race is breaking new territory, racing from the Great Plains from American West. Starting in the Corn Palace City, Mitchell, South Dakota, the 2008 race is the first year the AirVenture Cup will be run West to East, allowing participants to take advantage of the prevailing tailwinds.
The AirVenture Cup Race will attempt to replicate the excitement of the Bendix Trophy Races of the 1930’s where daredevil pilot’s began to go farther, and faster every day. Daredevil pilots like Jimmie Doolittle, Bill Lear Jr. and Amelia Airhart. Every aircraft is homebuilt and certified under the experimental category. Each aircraft represent 6,000+ hours of work. The race is open to Experimental Aircraft Association members.
According to Eric Whyte, event organizer, “Over fifty airplanes are registered and we have confirmation that Kevin Eldredge will be racing his Nemesis NXT. Kevin won the race last year against headwinds with an average speed of over 330 mph. We are hoping with a little tail wind Kevin might be able to break 400 mph on the race course this year.”
On Saturday, July 26 from 8:00 to 5:00 p.m. the public is invited to view a wide range of these experimental aircraft on and Sunday, July 27at 9:00 a.m. for the launch departure.
Activities on Saturday, July 26 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. are free of charge and include:
Fly-bys weather permitting...
A number of airplanes were designed by aviation legend Burt Rutan. Rutan is best known for his recent success as the first private space flight with SpaceShipOne. He also designed the Voyager which was the first airplane to fly non-stop no-refueled around the world.
Conversations with pilots...
Cirrus Design...
Cirrus Design, the world's leading innovator of single-engine, piston-powered aircraft will be in there with several of their latest demonstrator aircraft.
Sunday, July 27, 2008 starting at 9:00 a.m. weather permitting...
Race launch which is free of charge.
Dick Keyt and his Polen Special II. The Polen Special II holds the title of the fastest four cylinder airplane in the world and with Keyt at the helm has set many world records and has won every race he’s been in. Federation Aeronautique Internationale, the world’s sports federation presented him with the prestigious Belriot Medal.
Tony Crawford, a Reno National Air Race veteran will be arriving on Friday flying is Questair Venture “Chick’s Delight” – (It looks like a red and white egg with wings.)
James and Sandy Redmon, a husband and wife race team will be flying their Berkut which took almost 12 years to construct.
Rich and Ricardo Guerra, a father and son race team flying their Velocity.
All activities for the public are free and will take place at the Mitchell Airport at Wright Brothers Aviation located at 5971 Hangar Rd Mitchell, South Dakota. This launch is being sponsored by Mitchell Regional Marketing Committee, the Corn Palace Convention & Visitors Bureau and the State of South Dakota Aeronautics Commission.