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International Council of Air Shows

JLC Air Show Management Launches Air Show Race Series

October 24th, 2019

In early October, the FAA provided final accreditation to JLC Air  Show Management for a new air show-based racing series that is expected to debut during the 2021 air show season. 

The Airshow Racing Series (ARS) format uses two racing lanes with ten 40-foot inflatable pylons spaced approximately 600 feet apart to define the three-dimensional track for multiple heats of match-racing competition.  

With a pace plane in the lead, a pair of competing aircraft will approach the 4,000-foot long course and descend below 75 feet to navigate the slalom layout. At the end of the first run, the aircraft will execute a half-cuban aerobatic maneuver, turning 180 degrees to re-center over the race line for a second slalom pass. The planes will then reverse course one more time for the final sprint to the finish line located at the center of the crowd line. 

ARS will consist of two classes of racing: Super Sport and Extreme Sport. Racers in the Super Sport class will reach speeds of 160 knots. The Extreme Sports competitors will push speeds closer to 200 knots with eight G’s during racing action. 

The preliminary heats and final races are intended to function either as a stand-alone event or as a “show within a show” that air show event organizers can use to complement a more traditional schedule of air show performers.  

The projected 2021 racing series will include multiple air show race site venues.  Points will accumulate during the series to ultimately decide the two division champions. The inaugural race will take place during the Wings Over North Georgia Air Show in October 2020.