Airplane Racing: A History, 1909-2008

Overview

This is the history of air racing from its beginnings in 1909 at Reims, France, to the end of the 2008 racing season at Reno, Nevada. The history of air racing is very much the history of aviation, with glamorous pilots, some of military fame (e.g., Jimmy Doolittle), and builders (e.g., Glenn Curtiss), machines that captivated the national imagination, and many relatively unknown tinkerers and designers.

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Overview

This is the history of air racing from its beginnings in 1909 at Reims, France, to the end of the 2008 racing season at Reno, Nevada. The history of air racing is very much the history of aviation, with glamorous pilots, some of military fame (e.g., Jimmy Doolittle), and builders (e.g., Glenn Curtiss), machines that captivated the national imagination, and many relatively unknown tinkerers and designers.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786443000
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/8/2010
  • Series: Transportation/Aviation
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Don Berliner is the author of several air racing books and has written more than 300 magazine articles. He is the editor of Golden Pylons, the newsletter of the Society of Air Racing Historians and has officiated at air races in the United States, England, and France. He lives in Alexandria, Virginia.

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Table of Contents

Preface 1

Introduction 3

Section 1 Before World War I

1 The First Race at Reims 9

2 Overly Ambitious European Cross-Country Races 16

3 Weekly Handicap Races in England 27

4 The 1909-1913 Gordon Bennett Cup and Speed Records 33

5 The 1913-1914 Schneider Cup for Seaplanes 42

Section 2 Between the Wars

6 The Last Gordon Bennett Race, 1920 47

7 Streamlining and Power Light Up the 1919-1923 Schneider Cup Series 51

8 The 1920-1925 Pulitzer Trophy Races Stimulate American Military Racer Development 57

9 The 1922-1929 Kings Cup Races: Jolly Competition in a Garden Party Setting 63

10 The 1927 Dole Race Disaster: On to Hawaii and into the Pacific 67

11 The 1925-1928 Military-Oriented U.S. National Air Races 72

12 The 1929 U.S. National Air Races and the Thompson Trophy Race 76

13 The 1925-1931 Schneider Cup Races: Rampant Nationalism 87

14 The 1930-1934 National Air Races: GeeBees and Wedell Williams 93

15 The 1934 MacRobertson Race: The World's Greatest Air Race? 108

16 The 1933-1936 Coupe Deutsch de la Muerthe and the Sleek Caudrons 114

17 British Racing of the 1930s 124

18 The 1935-1939 U.S. National Air Races: Dwindling Participation 127

Section 3 Post-World War II

19 The 1946-1949 Cleveland National Air Races 133

20 The 1950-1960 Period: Midget Racing Keeps the Sport Alive 147

Section 4 The Reno Air Races Era

21 1964: The National Air Races Return in the Desert 153

22 The 1960s 160

23 The 1970s 176

24 The 1980s 191

25 The 1990s 204

26 The 2000s 216

27 Formula One Invades Europe 229

28 Short-Lived and Minor Classes 233

Summary and Outlook 239

Chapter Notes 243

Bibliography 247

Index 249

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