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Manfred Radius to Receive 2016 Bill Barber Award for Showmanship

June 30th, 2016

EAST TROY, WISCONSIN -- World Airshow News today announced that a long-time ICAS member will receive one of the air show industry’s highest honors July 26, during EAA AirVenture at EAA’s Theater in the Woods.

Manfred Radius will receive the 2016 Bill Barber Award for Showmanship according to a news release issued by World Airshow News June 30. Radius joins a long list of honorees that reads like an air show hall of fame.

Manfred Radius started flying sailplanes in 1961 at the age of 17 in Hamburg, Germany. He immigrated to Canada in 1969 and became a glider instructor pilot in 1972. He added the glider aerobatic instructor endorsement in 1977. For many years, Radius was the only glider aerobatic competitor in North America. He competed in the German Glider Aerobatic Championships in 1977, 1979, and 1981, and in 1985, he represented Canada in the first World Championship of Glider Aerobatics in Austria.

Radius began flying his sailplane aerobatics at airshows in 1986, and has since performed in airshows all over North America and as far away as Australia. Flying a H101 Salto sailplane, his graceful, silent aerobatics are accompanied by a classical music soundtrack and wingtip smoke. His act is a crowd-pleasing change of pace from the noisy performances of powered aircraft. Radius is well-known for his unique sailplane inverted ribbon cut.

In addition to his daytime performances, Radius is also well known for his spectacular night show. With pyrotechnics on each wingtip, he creates a nighttime ballet in the sky. He has been performing his “Night Delight” since 1990.

Radius has logged well over 5,500 flights and accumulated over 2,300 hours in over 60 types of sailplanes. In 1974 he achieved an altitude of 35,000 feet over the Rocky Mountains, and in 1986, he flew for 8 hours and 45 minutes, covering a distance of 340 miles over the Appalachian Mountains. He is also an experienced skydiver, having logged over 1,100 jumps over more than 30 years.

The Bill Barber Award for Showmanship began in 1986, and is awarded to air show performers or teams that have demonstrated great skill and showmanship. World Airshow News magazine and the friends and family of the late Bill Barber present the award annually.

Past Bill Barber Award winners include:

2015 Bob Carlton

2014  Greg Koontz

2013  Skip Stewart

2012  Matt Younkin

2011  Rich and Dee Gibson

2010  Steve Oliver and Suzanne Asbury-Oliver

2009  Michael Goulian

2008  Bud Granley

2007  Dacy Family Airshow Team

2006  Danny Clisham

2005  Pietsch Airshows

2004  Bobby Younkin

2003  Jim LeRoy

2002  AeroShell Aerobatic Team

2001  Northern Lights Aerobatic Team

2000  John Mohr

1999  Dan Buchanan

1998  Patty Wagstaff

1997  Gene Soucy & Teresa Stokes

1996  Wayne Handley

1995  Bob Hoover

1994  Bob & Annette Hosking

1993  Red Baron Stearman Squadron

1992  Sean D. Tucker

1991  Julie Clark

1990  Leo Loudenslager

1989  Jimmy Franklin

1988  No Award

1987  The French Connection

1986  Eagles Aerobatic Flight Team


For more information on The Bill Barber Award for Showmanship, contact Sandy Parnau, Publisher, World Airshow News, at sandyparnau@gmail.com or 414-801-1636.