Call Me Argonaut 2

A truly unique event takes place in Reno, Nevada, every September – the National Championship Air Races. This gathering of pilots, aircraft, crews and crowds are all part of the fastest motor sport in the world. NASCAR and Formula 1 can’t hold a candle to this event, with speeds at Reno in some classes exceeding 500 miles per hour. I first attended three years ago and became instantly addicted to the sights and sounds. The racing of course is the main attraction, but visitors can also buy passes to tour the pits. The fans can see crews working on the aircraft with cowls removed and arms buried in an engine compartment searching for a bug or tweaking the engine to squeeze out a bit more performance for the next heat.

The control tower cab at Reno's Stead Airport. Photo: Michael Henniger

It did not take me very long to realize the crews are not the only personalities here. Fans and crews alike don’t talk about a P-51D with a serial number 44-74536, they talk about the winged beauty like it is a person, referring to it by name, Miss America. People don’t refer to an F8F-2 with bureau number 122629, but rather they speak about Rare Bear. At Reno the aircraft are people too. These aircraft have personalities. People will say: “Did you see that battle for the lead between Strega and Rare Bear?” The pilots are sometimes mentioned, but it is almost always about the aircraft. At Vintage Wings we honour the veterans long after the battles are over, but what about the aircraft? When a retired veteran visits the Vintage Wings hangar they are given the royal treatment, usually meaning a full tour, and we always want to hear about what they have done since they retired from military service. But I ask again, what about the aircraft? Where do they go when they reach retirement? Are these pieces of kit ever given names or are they just forgotten?

An aircraft with a name becomes a racer with an attitude and a personality, as witnessed by this photo of Rare Bear, a highly-modified Grumman F8F Bearcat that dominated the Reno Air Races for decades. Rare Bear has set many performance records for piston-driven aircraft, including the 3 km World Speed Record of 528.33 mph (850.26 km/h), set on 21 August 1989, and a new time-to-climb record (3,000 meters in 91.9 seconds set in 1972 (9842.4 ft – 6,426 fpm), breaking a 1946 record set in a stock Bearcat). Photo: Michael Henniger

According to Warbird Depot: “Miss America is one of the fastest, most beautiful and certainly most recognizable airplanes in the world. Since 1966, Miss America has travelled all over the United States, serving as a symbol of freedom and liberty. Photo: Michael Henniger

One of the last piston-powered fighters in Canadian service was the Hawker Sea Fury. This was a large beast built for carrier operations and equipped with the Bristol Centaurus engine producing about 2,400 hp. One of these Royal Canadian Navy machines was TG114 which had served with 803 and 870 Squadrons. In 1962 TG114 retired from active duty, appeared on the civil register as CF-OYF and was based at Pendleton, Ontario, outside Ottawa. Just a few years later she was transferred to a new owner in the United States, registered N4763T for a short period, and later N54M. Not long after the airframe came to grief when it flipped over on landing at Houma, Louisiana. In 1969, the wreck was moved to Phoenix, Arizona, and was placed in storage for many years. Not a very good retirement so far and, on top of that, the only name the airframe was ever given was a series of registration numbers. TG114 was never named and was not viewed as a personality. I am sure we all want more for ourselves in our retirement years.

TG114 would have a fortunate change of luck when, in 1970, it was acquired by Frank Sanders of Chino, California. Mr. Sanders went on to form a family business in aviation which, among other things, included the speciality of restoring Sea Furies. Repairs were made and TG114 had air under its wings once again. The airframe passed through the hands of a number of owners, but in 1990 TG114 returned to the Sanders family and eventually another restoration was undertaken, this time with the installation of a Wright R-3350 producing up to 3,500 hp. TG114 had some muscle under the cowl now! In 1994 she flew again and went onto to race as No. 19, and yes TG114 was given a name... Argonaut!

After many years as a nameless ex-RCN Sea Fury, she entered the racing world as Argonaut and quickly earned a reputation as a hard charger. Photo: Michael Henniger

Argonaut wears a Royal Canadian Navy set of markings from 803 Squadron, as Sea Fury TG-114 (aircraft code BC-L). Here we see the original TG114 aboard HMS Magnificent in the 1950s. Photo via the Argonaut website and the Doug Fisher Collection

Hawker Sea Fury TG114, originally powered by a Bristol Centaurus, warms up on the ground with long-range fuel tanks. Photo via the Argonaut website and the Doug Fisher Collection

Between jobs. A photo of Royal Canadian Navy Sea Fury TG114, now known as Argonaut, before her refurbishment by the Sanders family and her air racing career. The aircraft carried a Canadian registration – CF-OYF and was registered to Brian Baird of Toronto. The image was taken at Ottawa's Uplands base in 1963. Photo: Hugh Halliday

Another view of the Sea Fury TG114 that was eventually to become Argonaut (CF-OYF), seen at Uplands in 1963. Photo: Hugh Halliday

Argonaut coming together at the Sanders in the early 1990s. We can clearly see the tight fit with the original engine. Photo via Sanders Family

Argonaut's first engine start was a smoky one. Without the massive nose spinner, the Sea Fury looks like an altogether different aircraft. Photo via Sanders Family

Argonaut takes to the skies for the first time after its restoration. Photo via Sanders Family

Argonaut not only had a new life and new engine, but also a new name. Eventually Argonaut was painted in original Royal Canadian Navy markings so it could race as No. 114 which was much more appropriate. How is retirement now? I only hope I can be as active when it is my turn to retire! Argonaut has become a respected racer and appeared at nearly every Reno Air Race from 1990 on. In 2011 Sanders Aeronautics equipped Argonaut with a Pratt and Whitney R-2800 showing their commitment to keep her a reliable and regular racer.

A Conversation with Korey Wells

As mentioned previously Reno is unique. It is not like a NASCAR, Indy or Formula 1 event. The driver/pilot just can’t just pull over when something goes wrong with their machine, this much is obvious. Actually, when you think about it, the Reno races reflect more of the spirit of horse racing where the stead is the plane and the jockey is the pilot and both have names. This much I could figure out on my own, but there is much more to air racing, and as a novice I could only pick up a little understanding here and there. To prepare for this article I contacted Argonaut’s jockey... err... pilot, Korey Wells. Korey is a great guy and took the time to talk to me about racing at Reno.

Korey Wells at the controls of Sea Fury Argonaut Photo: Michael Henniger

MH: Where are you from?

KW: Ione, California. I live about 20 minutes from the Eagles Nest.

MH: Do you work for the Sanders family?

KW: I have worked for them for about 11 years now. I am the Chief Inspector.

MH: Were you involved with the project to reequip Argonaut with the R-2800?

KW: Yes, as a matter of fact I was flying Argonaut when the last 3350 failed. It was in March 2010 when I was coming back from an air show and got a chip light about 20 miles south of the airport. I was at low level buzzing my house to let my wife know I was headed home. The chip light came on, I climbed up to a fairly high altitude and made a big arc to the airport. The engine was running OK. I landed and shut it down and we checked the screens and such. It had metal in the screens and that was that. That was the last 3350 for Argonaut.

MH: What was the motivation to install a Pratt & Whitney R-2800 over the Wright R-3350?

KW: That was the fifth 3350 we had put on the airplane in the last twelve years. There have been five engine failures. They have all been given names. There was a Brian engine, a Dennis engine, a Kurt engine, a CJ and a Korey engine. Actually we call them motors. They have all been for different failures, different reasons. All mechanical. So it is not like it was something we have been doing operationally, it has just been bad luck with the 3350. We can buy a brand new 2800 for less than the cost of overhauling a 3350. The airplane is over 600 pounds lighter with the 2800. It is 400 horsepowers less than the 3350, but with the weight difference we don’t notice any difference in takeoff and climb and it is only about 10 to 15 miles per hour slower at the races. But we are very confident with that motor. We have put just over 120 hours on it in just over a year. So we are very happy with the 2800, and they are very plentiful, they are being built every day.

MH: Now when you say “built” do you mean overhauled? Are they taking cores out of storage or scrap yards and building them up as new?

KW: Yeah. They are used on a lot of freighters like up in Alaska and such. They are also used on fire bombers so there is a big rotation coming off, overhauled, back on, off, overhauled, back on. There are a lot of cores out there for guys that don’t have an engine yet. We didn’t have a core so we just bought one outright and had it overhauled by Anderson Aeromotive and bolted it on the airplane. It was a big deal to make it fit. It took a new engine mount and new cowling mounts. The cowling and prop, everything is the same, the only things that changed was the exhaust pipe, engine mount, oil tank and various hookups but from the outside you can’t tell the difference.

MH: I noticed when you had the cowlings off there didn’t seem to be much extra room in there.

KW: It actually has more room in it than the 3350. The 3350 actually filled up the cowling. The 2800 is several inches narrower in diameter so it is a much better fit. The engine is much happier in there.

In the pits, the access panels gape open on Argonaut to reveal the snug fitting Pratt and Whitney R-2800 engine. Also, the Sea Fury may just have the largest nose spinner in the warbird universe. Photo: Michael Henniger

Argonaut's ground crew check that everything is perfect before the qualification heat. Photo: Michael Henniger

MH: So when you came to Reno you qualified on the Monday and you got a speed of 394.19 mph. Were you happy with that?

KW: I was. Absolutely!

MH: Is the idea for qualifying to get the fastest time out there, or is it just to place?

KW: No. For the most part the idea is to post the best qualifying time. The faster you are the closer you are to the pole position for your heat races on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The faster you go, the higher you qualify, the closer you are to the pole position. That is where you want to be. If you can be right on the pace plane you have a nice straight shot at the start pylon, which is Pylon No. 4, versus the guy who is all the way out, six or seven aircraft to the outside, he has to come across and in. It is also harder to hold that position all the way out there. So the pole is the preferred spot. Just like in car racing when you go into the first turn you want to be in the lead.

MH: The difference in car racing compared to air racing, is with car racing you don’t want to try and hold first place for the whole race, whereas in air racing you do. Correct? Why?

KW: Correct. Yes. With air racing you do want to hold first place. If you can get out front you are a lot better off because you are not in the wake turbulence of the other airplanes which slows you down. Also wake turbulence can be dangerous since it wants to roll you. If it rolls you to the left it could roll you into the dirt. If it rolls you to the right it wants to roll you outside the course over the deadline which disqualifies you. You also run the risk of going into another airplane if there is one next to you passing on the outside.

MH: I have attended the races with my scanner, and one thing I have noticed is the pilots are constantly communicating with each other, letting each other know where they are when one is passing another. How is this covered in your training and briefings? What needs to be done to safely pass another airplane?

KW: There is no strategy as far as the communication portion of it. That is just for safety. Unlike with car racing you can’t bump fenders. Also you can’t pass on the inside because you can’t see the one you are passing. If you are passing somebody your job is to see them the whole time, that is how you keep from hitting them. In car racing you can pass on the inside or outside, if you touch you just bump off of each other and you get a little body damage. In air racing, if you touch you crash. So you need to be very, very careful not to touch or collide with another airplane. In an effort to do that you pass high, or on the same line down low, but not inside. You, as the guy passing, must be able to see who you are going around. If you go high you can see him and you are in view from of the other airplane. If you go wide, only you can see the other plane. What you want to do, and it is not required, but it is just a good idea, when you are overtaking another airplane you call to them by name. We know everyone by name for the most part. You would say: “Hey Brian, I am coming around on the outside” or “I am coming by on the top.” That way he knows what you are doing and he is not likely to move his position.

The high side pass. The advantage in this case, when the aircraft performance envelopes are closely matched, is that the racer with the altitude advantage can dive on a post-turn straightaway in an attempt to complete the pass. Photo: Michael Henniger

MH: Just to clarify... If you are close enough to pass he is probably already going as fast as he can and if you have more there isn’t much he can do about it. That person will try to hold the speed in case you can’t make it by, but once you are by it is all about safety. How far ahead do you need to be to make a tighter turn around the course?

KW: If you are passing a plane, that plane has to be a plane length behind you before you can drop back down or come back in to retake your line. That is if your preferred line is lower or higher. If the line where you are is already your preferred line and you are the faster plane then you just come whizzing right by and never change your line. You want to make sure the other guy doesn’t slip up and get in your way. One of the things that we preach at every pilot briefing is you fly your line and be predictable. Don’t be all over the race course. If you like to fly high and wide, then that is fine, that is where you are going to fly, but don’t fly high and wide on one lap then come down and fly low and tight on another. Because then you are not predictable and the guys that are racing with you and coming around you don’t know where you are going to be. So you want to fly your line. Every pilot has a line they like to fly. Some of them are tight, some of them are wide, or high or low. It is kind of a strange thing when you first get in there. I remember when I took the race course rookie school, initially you just go out following the instructor. Eventually on the third flight they say the race course is yours and you are free to fly around the course. I got down real low and tight into the pylons, because I thought that would be a really great place to be because I like to fly low. But it really wasn’t comfortable. So I talked to Dennis, the owner of Argonaut, and he said: “Well yeah you are really low, and you might want to come up some because it might work out a bit better for you.” So even though it wasn’t where I anticipated I might want to fly, it became my happy spot or line. The next time out I started kind of high and slowly let myself descend and then stopped when I told myself: “I am comfy here.” I reached the line where everything visually looks right to me, the pylons, the deadlines, it all felt good so that is where I fly now when I go out on the course. You kind of pick that up from the other racers. Some guys go way high, so go way low. I am kind of in between to a little low and I stay kind of tight, so that even flying with the faster planes, if someone needs to come around they have plenty of room to come around on the outside of me. If I am coming up on somebody I just need to move up a bit or sweep out a bit without it being an exaggerated manoeuvre to get around somebody.

As you can see here, using the vehicles in the background for scale, the R in RENO is not far off the groundperhaps about 50 ft. An aircraft going wide and likely banking steeply may only leave a 25 ft clearance from the low wing tip to the desert floor.

MH: So on the course what is low? Is the low limit 50 feet?

KW: Approximately. Your helmet can not be below the top of the “R” in “Reno” on the home pylon which is essentially 50 feet-ish. But you know if you get down that low and you have a 50 foot wingspan on the airplane that makes your wing tip 25 feet off the desert. That is pretty low.

MH: What is the high limit?

KW: There was a lot of talk and discussion about that this year. They put a 250 foot cap on it in 2012. The rule was if you were above 250 you were disqualified. Well that is not proper. If you are coming along and you get into wake turbulence, and you will see the airplanes getting kicked around, there are times you need to go above 250 feet to stop from crashing or hitting another airplane in wake turbulence. If you have a guy flying at 200 feet and you are going to pass him in wake turbulence, you can’t pass down low. If he is flying wide you have to go up on top and that can put you outside of 250 feet. It becomes a safety issue if you have two or three planes stacked up, and you are trying to come around like Steve-O for instance. What is he going to do? Is he going to pull his power back and fly 50 miles per hour slower because he can’t go above 250 feet to pass these guys? That isn’t fair. Or, you are hanging right behind someone in wake turbulence and you can’t stay there because of the turbulence so you need to move up, but that puts you above the 250 and you are disqualified? Uhhh, no. There were some issues raised during the races and they altered the rule because it was a safety issue. We will see what they do in 2013. There was a cap originally of 350 feet which is plenty high. If you are flying outside of 350 feet that is very high because the higher you get the harder it gets to align yourself with the pylons and keep from going over the deadline.

Steve-O is Steven Hinton who has won the 2009, 2010 and 2012 Unlimited Gold Reno Races in Strega, a highly modified P-51 which had originally served in the Royal Australian Air Force.

Korey and Argonaut complete the turn at Pylon 8 during qualifying. Two consecutive laps must be completed without passing over the deadlines or cutting a pylon for a valid qualifying run. Argonaut qualified at 356.411 mph.

MH: So you qualified in first place in the Bronze level?

KW: Actually my first heat race was in first place in the Bronze. The qualifying establishes the order of the planes and from there they set up the subcategories: Gold, Silver, Bronze and Medallion. Will Whiteside in his Yak and I in the Sea Fury were only a tenth of a second apart in our qualifying times. He was just a hair faster than me, but because of the number of airplanes and the speeds he started last in the Silver and I started first in the Bronze.

MH: So they take the full group of aircraft and evenly distribute them among the groups?

KW: The number of airplanes will determine the number of sub classes because you can only have so many airplanes in each race. So you will have a Gold, Silver and Bronze, and if you have enough airplanes you will have the Medallion. The fast qualifier of all the airplanes starts with the pole in the Gold Heat races, and then it goes on down, but you can only start with seven airplanes. Then they fill up the Silver. Then it goes down the Bronze if there are enough airplanes. If there are still enough planes there will be a Medallion.

MH: So you finished that first race at 356.411 mph, and Race No. 924, another Sea Fury, was right behind you at 356.316. That was piloted by Brian Sanders. Is he your boss?

KW: Yeah, he is one of them. Him, Dennis Sanders and Ruth Sanders are the owners of Sanders Aeronautics. They own all of the airplanes. Race No. 924 is a Sea Fury with an original Bristol Centaurus motor in it. It is not as fast as Argonaut. We were both at full power coming down the chute at the start of the race and I just walked away from him. Not by a huge amount, but he was full throttle and I was full throttle, and I just slowly pull him. So we got one lap under our belts just going and then pulled the power back because neither one of us were racing anybody. Nobody was going to pass us.

Race No. 924 is a Sea Fury T.20 with an original Bristol Centaurus. Notice the five prop blades compared to Argonaut’s four. Photo: Michael Henniger

Korey Wells in Argonaut and Dennis Saunders in Race No. 924 come out of the chute on a direct line to Pylon 4 during the first race on the Thursday. Photo: Mike Henniger

MH: You had a good 25 mph over the next plane, the P-51, The Rebel. You had pretty good spacing there.

KW: Yeah we pulled the power back a bit just to help preserve the engines. There is no sense being full throttle when you are not racing anybody. So we just pulled the throttle back and cruised around the race course. Brian with his exceptional flying skills he just came up and flew formation on me, which we did for the crowd because, to the crowd, it looked like we were racing!

MH: Oh, it looked fantastic! I got some good photos. I was out at Pylon No. 2 at the time. I loved it.

KW: Yeah it was fun. It was a good time. That airplane, No. 924, we just finished a 15 year restoration on it and got it flying just in time to bring it to Reno. That is an original family Sea Fury. Their father who started all of this, that was his second Sea Fury. It has been in the family since the early 1970s. It was kind of cool to have it back at Reno again.

There were times when Race No. 924 appeared to be leading Argonaut and at other times it was the reverse. As it turned out it was just the two holding formation. They were not going to overtake or be overtaken so Korey and Dennis put on a good show.

MH: So, I am looking at the next race you were in, which was on the Friday. It looks like both you and Brian Sanders bumped up to Silver and you started at the back of the pack in 4th and 5th positions. The race finished with your two Sea Furies in those positions, but you really were not all that far behind Will Whiteside in Steadfast were you?

KW: Yeah, Will and I were racing at it, we were really racing. Brian came back on the power again because he can’t keep up with us and there is no point blowing up one of the few original Centaurus motors around. Will and I had a nice little race going. It kind of goes back to the wake turbulence bit. I was pretty close to him a couple of times and was in a position to come around him a few times, but when you hit wake turbulence it slows you down. He was able to get me on every start when we were together. I don’t know how he managed to get me on the start so good every time, but once he got the lead there wasn’t enough difference in speed between the two airplanes to go around him.

Steve Hinton, the CT-133 Silver Star (T-33) pace aircraft pilot, calls out over the radio those famous words: “Looking good. Gentlemen you have a race!” Race No. 924 started on the outside (left in this picture). Then Argonaut and the P-51 Miss America. Miss America pulled away quite soon and went on to win the race. This left Argonaut and Steadfast fighting for third place for most of the race. Photo: Michael Henniger

Will Whiteside and Steadfast pass by Pylon 2 during the Friday Unlimited Silver race. Steadfast is a Russian Yak-3 modified with a Pratt and Whitney R-2000, the same engine found on the old Canadian-built de Havilland Canada Caribous and Douglas DC-4s. Photo: Michael Henniger 

MH: Is this a case of where you go high and use gravity to just edge you by, or did it become apparent that just wasn’t enough?

KW: No. What I was doing was I wanted to get in and fly my line because that is where I was going to be the fastest, but that is where he was. He flies almost the same line I fly. For me to get in that line is wake turbulence because I would be flying right behind him and you can’t do that. It is dangerous as you are moving the control stick from stop to stop to keep the plane from rolling on its back. So I came up on him a little bit high and tried to gain on him there and I was able to hold myself a little bit and not give up any room. I crept up on him a couple of times by flying just a bit higher than him, enough to keep him in sight but he was able to hold it off. He did change his line a couple of times on a couple of turns and kind of bounced me around a little bit. There was a little jockeying out there, he wasn’t just coasting.

This race course map was provided by the Reno Air Racing Association and gives you an understanding of how the various courses are shaped. The Unlimited Course (larger outside yellow line) is 8.4 miles. The race on the Sunday is eight laps which means the Unlimiteds travel 64 miles in eight minutes.

MH: On the Saturday Will Whiteside, in the Yak Steadfast, and you, in the Sea Fury Argonaut, started in second and third place in the Silver Heat. I assume at this point it was more of the same racing.

KW: Again, Will, I don’t know what the formula he was using for his start, he would pull me a little on the start and he would make the first turn. I just didn’t have enough to get around him after that.

MH: That first turn you are talking about, is that Pylon No. 4 on the first lap?

KW: Yep.

MH: So you head straight for Pylon No. 4 and it is a different line for subsequent laps?

KW: It is a little bit different. But the further out you are the more distance you are travelling and you have more airplanes between you and where you want to be. But if you are on the pole and you can keep ahead of the lineup, you have a straight shot and you don’t have to worry about any other airplanes. You just roll right in on a line you choose to lose the least amount of speed and come around the corner. Everybody else behind, from second place on, they are all fighting each other and in turbulence and stuff trying to come around the same corner. It slows them down and you just zip away.

The unlimited and jet class racers follow a course which, on the first lap, takes them to the first turn at Pylon 4. Here we see a full-on jet race approaching Pylon 4, which is mounted up on a ridge. Photo: Mike Henniger

Pylon 4 is mounted at the highest ground point on the course, making it easily visible. Here an L-39 zips past the pylon at over 500 mph. Photo: Mike Henniger

MH: That No. 4 is up on a hill isn’t it?

KW: Yes it is. Previous years it was off the hill down in a valley. The whole angle of the start was completely different this year.

MH: You are actually dropping in altitude after you pass Pylon 4. Is that what they call the Valley of Speed?

KW: Nope. After you come around No. 5 and then roll to come into No. 6, that is the Valley of Speed.

MH: So on the Sunday Steadfast starts in first place in the Silver Heat and Argonaut is in second place. It is just you and Steadfast and you don’t have any aircraft in front of you stirring up turbulence. It is more of the same racing? Was there a point where you could say you were not going to get past this guy or was it a full race?

KW: It was a full race! We were both full throttle. We were racing. I was keeping him honest. If he had made any mistakes or came off the power at all I would have gone by him. It was that close. He was having to work for it. I was working to stay where I was. We actually had a pretty good start. We were dead neck-and-neck and when Steve Hinton called “Gentlemen you have a race!” I was right with Will and he just slowly crept ahead and he had about a plane length on me by the time we got into No. 4, and we stayed like there for a while. He is just a better race pilot than I am. He has been racing for a number of years and this was my first year. We had airplanes at basically the same speed. He was able to fly a little bit better line, and in fact he was flying my line where I like to be and I couldn’t get back down there. I was back there trying everything I could to catch up. The furthest back I got was two seconds and there were times I was much closer. But we were fighting it.

Steadfast, in first place, leads Argonaut and Race No.924 past Pylon 7 and onto Pylon 8 during the Sunday Silver Final race.

Two other Sea Furies, Dreadnaught (also owned by the Sanders Family) and Race No. 232 battle it out at Reno. Sea Furies are back with a vengeance. Photo: Michael Henniger

MH: You got second place in Silver too. Really, in recent years the Sea Furies have not done so well. The race plane landscape is completely different this year and is really quite impressive.

KW: Oh yeah! It was a great year for the Sea Furies. We fielded three of the five that were there. There were Sea Furies in second and third in the Gold, and second and third in the Silver.

MH: Which was your third Sea Fury?

KW: We had Dreadnought, Argonaut and Race No. 924. Those are all Sanders airplanes. Race No. 232 was one we built up years ago. Then there was also Furias, one that we built up and turned over to another racing program as well. It was a good showing for Sea Furies.

MH: Well I have been very impressed by Argonaut.

KW: Yeah, and she is basically a stock Sea Fury except for the R-2800. When we race her she still has the tail hook! We are not taping over gaps. We are not making any airframe mods. We are running rated power. We do have API and spray bar for the oil cooler, but that is just so we can run rated power. It is the same airplane we fly to air shows. The only difference is we take the smoke generators off the wing tips. In fact, two weekends after Reno, Dennis and I took Dreadnaught and Argonaut down to Paso Robles to help sponsor a museum down there!

MH: I very much appreciate the time you have given me as well as my new understanding of air racing. I am sure the readers will appreciate it as well. Thanks Korey!

KW: You are welcome. I’ll see you at Reno next September!

Photo via Argonaut website and Roger Cain Photography

Photo via Argonaut website

Photo via Argonaut website by Scott Germain

The biggest nose spinner in the business. Photo: Michael Henniger

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