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Thread: What If....2021

  1. #41
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    Quote Originally Posted by AAFO_WSagar View Post
    Was it Thorton Audraine (sp?) who has been quoted as once saying "These guys would race for a bucket of s#it if we made them bring the bucket...

    Sorry, just had to throw that in for contrast...
    Great quote! And very likely true for a fair number of racers in all classes!
    Owen Ashurst
    Performer Air Boss - Reno Air Races
    http://airbossone.com/

  2. #42
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Air Boss View Post
    Great quote! And very likely true for a fair number of racers in all classes!
    ANNNND that is one of the reasons I truly love this sport! The one pilot I knew best and spent the most time with would have to be one of the best race pilots EVER... Lyle Shelton... I doubt very seriously he ever made $.02 racing the Rare Bear... I would bet money on it!
    Wayne Sagar
    "Pusher of Electrons"

  3. #43
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    Quote Originally Posted by AAFO_WSagar View Post
    Was it Thorton Audraine (sp?) who has been quoted as once saying "These guys would race for a bucket of s#it if we made them bring the bucket...

    Sorry, just had to throw that in for contrast...
    That was actually Jerry Duty...a quote directly to Lyle Shelton and Bob Love in the 1973/74 off-season during the PRPA negotiations with RARA. Lyle and Bob threatened to have the unlimiteds boycott, and that was Jerry Duty's reply.

  4. #44
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Big_Jim View Post
    That was actually Jerry Duty...a quote directly to Lyle Shelton and Bob Love in the 1973/74 off-season during the PRPA negotiations with RARA. Lyle and Bob threatened to have the unlimiteds boycott, and that was Jerry Duty's reply.
    Sport filled with colorful characters!

    Always wondered exactly how much leverage RARA and the Classes have on each other WRT KRTS being essentially the only sandbox around...
    Owen Ashurst
    Performer Air Boss - Reno Air Races
    http://airbossone.com/

  5. #45
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    Quote Originally Posted by Big_Jim View Post
    That was actually Jerry Duty...a quote directly to Lyle Shelton and Bob Love in the 1973/74 off-season during the PRPA negotiations with RARA. Lyle and Bob threatened to have the unlimiteds boycott, and that was Jerry Duty's reply.
    Thanks for clarification Jim... I'd still wager, even then, Lyle and the rest could only hope to defray the costs to race by purse and sponsorship..

    There certainly was no great wealth of sponsor $$ knocking on the door when I was involved with Lyle.. The fan sponsorship thing we did back then was only partially successful in getting it done...

    I also would be remiss if I didn't mention the dedication and absolute HEART of the teams! Sure was no money going crew way with Lyle's efforts in the final effort before selling the racer. Most of the guys on the team were based in Reno working for airlines... Crew chief Stacy Thomas had to fly in non-rev to get there LOL

    Again, that's a lot of what appeals to me about this particular sport... these people just want to race!
    Wayne Sagar
    "Pusher of Electrons"

  6. #46
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    PLEASE do not get me wrong! I am NOT advocating purse changes.... already difficult enough for racers without really deep pockets to make RENO happen...
    Wayne Sagar
    "Pusher of Electrons"

  7. #47
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    spent 10yrs. as an NCAA basketball official
    Owen, do you ever work Aztec Men’s home games? If so, in the future hit me up. I work all the home games flying the blimp. It would be a pleasure to meet you.

    Regarding this fantastic thread, wouldn’t this be sooooooo much more productive if we had real numbers? If only RARA would open their books. A bit of transparency would make donating to RARA more palatable too….meanwhile in speculation land,

    Couple of thoughts,

    Not running races and instead parading the classes to save money on insurance costs.

    I fear the improbability of putting the correct marketing spin on this to avoid backlash limits this option. The event is branded as “The National Air Races”. No races means no interest for over 50% of the gate?
    My own personal bias is toward the racing aspect of the NCAR being 95% of the reason I attend or care to follow the event at all. This bias is far too overwhelming to overcome. There is nothing much I would rather experience than a good air race, served-up Reno style. The smell of competition is visceral as the air is literally shook apart. I think that the event would be just an empty shell without actual racing.

    Regarding the “gotta present ‘em a World Class Airshow” theory.

    I dunno. To me the fluff was always fluff with one exception. Watching Lefty or Hoover or even the T-33 doing aerobatics between races was such a gift. I think most of us would be happy watching between race flybys of the rare and exotic aircraft found in the Heritage collection. Toss in a loud Military demo periodically?
    Clearly, many seats are filled by those wanting to see the Blues or T-Birds but there were some leaner years when the Blues and Birds could not be scheduled, was the gate down those years?

    Requiring teams to qualify for limited slots.

    Double edged sword. There are ramifications to this policy. One being the ultimate shrinking of the interested-in-racing AC owners. If you are interested in air racing your pet, ya gotta enter the arena at a much higher level of capability if there were just 16 slots, than if there were 32 slots. Sure you can have 32 wanabees vie for 16 slots for a short run, but those mid-pack and behind folks are going to run out of enthusiasm real quick.

    That said, I agree 100% the show must constrict in some way to survive.
    '71 S.D.1000, '85-'91,'94',95,'97-'99,'02,'04,'06,'08,'10,'13,'14 NCAR.

  8. #48
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    Quote Originally Posted by planecrazy2 View Post
    Owen, do you ever work Aztec Men’s home games? If so, in the future hit me up. I work all the home games flying the blimp. It would be a pleasure to meet you.

    Regarding this fantastic thread, wouldn’t this be sooooooo much more productive if we had real numbers? If only RARA would open their books. A bit of transparency would make donating to RARA more palatable too….meanwhile in speculation land,

    Couple of thoughts,

    Not running races and instead parading the classes to save money on insurance costs.

    I fear the improbability of putting the correct marketing spin on this to avoid backlash limits this option. The event is branded as “The National Air Races”. No races means no interest for over 50% of the gate?
    My own personal bias is toward the racing aspect of the NCAR being 95% of the reason I attend or care to follow the event at all. This bias is far too overwhelming to overcome. There is nothing much I would rather experience than a good air race, served-up Reno style. The smell of competition is visceral as the air is literally shook apart. I think that the event would be just an empty shell without actual racing.

    Regarding the “gotta present ‘em a World Class Airshow” theory.

    I dunno. To me the fluff was always fluff with one exception. Watching Lefty or Hoover or even the T-33 doing aerobatics between races was such a gift. I think most of us would be happy watching between race flybys of the rare and exotic aircraft found in the Heritage collection. Toss in a loud Military demo periodically?
    Clearly, many seats are filled by those wanting to see the Blues or T-Birds but there were some leaner years when the Blues and Birds could not be scheduled, was the gate down those years?

    Requiring teams to qualify for limited slots.

    Double edged sword. There are ramifications to this policy. One being the ultimate shrinking of the interested-in-racing AC owners. If you are interested in air racing your pet, ya gotta enter the arena at a much higher level of capability if there were just 16 slots, than if there were 32 slots. Sure you can have 32 wanabees vie for 16 slots for a short run, but those mid-pack and behind folks are going to run out of enthusiasm real quick.

    That said, I agree 100% the show must constrict in some way to survive.
    Hey Glen,
    My days of pounding the hardwood are long since over and no, never worked an Aztec gig. I worked mostly NCAA Div III, Div II and some off-season D1 stuff, along NAIA and JuCo games all along the west coast. And my knees are now reminding me of the fact that counting scrimmages, camps, practices, and games I worked 100+ games a year for several years. My surgeon and I are on a first-name basis...never a good sign! Likely have both replaced during this airshow off-season.

    Not sure how much more RARA can do re: "opening their books." They're a 501(c)3 and by law their financials are publicly available. I know of very few, if any, non-profits that freely open their kumono's for the world to poke around in. Remember, if the IRS filings are not up to snuff, it would likely result in exactly the kind of things we're all trying to avoid. I, for one, am satisfied with the manner in which RARA discloses their financial situation.

    No question there is a risk to not running fully sanctioned "racing" in 2021. For one thing it would mean a two-year hiatus for those folks. Attrition and waning interest may be a factor. The trade-off is the real possibility of gaining a stronger foothold on financial stability and demonstrating that we're willing to do whatever is reasonably necessary to save this event. Yes, there are several known unknowns here. But the known knowns are undeniable. Maintaining BAU will likely not get RARA out of the red ink. And while I'll contribute to the cause again in a couple different ways, I'd like to have a greater understanding as to what RARA is considering for 2021 to avoid BAU. It seems a challenging scenario to throw $500K at the problem if it means you're faced with the same or similar problem next year.

    I know it may come across as self-serving and believe me, that is NOT the case. That said, it's no secret that if you want to put butts in the bleachers your event must include military jet teams, single-ship demos, warbird acts, and the like. I know RARA has the numbers on gate for years with or without jet teams. I just don't know what they are of the top of my head. What I can say my partner and I work about 15 shows every year, and those shows that alternate between team or no team see a marked drop in attendance in off years. RARA's checkbook is not much different that yours or mine. If your balance is dwindling, you either need to reduce spending or increase income...in RARA's case, both would be even better. And the past decade as proven time and again that continuing to operate as we have in past is not going rebalance that checkbook. It's really that simple.

    I take your point regarding the limitation of slots but I believe it is central to righting the ship by increasing the level of competition and truncating the length of the event. Will some folks become dissolutioned and decide not to participate...perhaps. But in essence what you're left with is a group of committed pilots and crews who, by one means or another, have demonstrated a willigness to work harder to go faster. And in the end, isn't that what "racing" is all about...going faster than the other guy?

    Really appreciate your thoughts here, Glen. I can tell you that when the opportunity presents itself, much of what is kicked around here will be strongly considered in my thinking. Otherwise, I would not have bothered to reach out here. Can't say how much or if it will find its way into the cake RARA is baking, but rest assured it is greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by Air Boss; 12-02-2020 at 10:49 AM.
    Owen Ashurst
    Performer Air Boss - Reno Air Races
    http://airbossone.com/

  9. #49

    Default Re: What If....2021

    Does anyone know the logistics involved with the Ely races?
    I gather like 50 people showed up, but if the slower racers need a qualifier/consolation event, I wonder if there are some options there. It's obviously big enough an area for the IF1/biplane course. I wonder if it's big enough for the bronze/medallion sport course?

    This qualifier/consolation event doesn't need to be open to the public to limit risk of collateral damage and hopefully help with insurance cost. If the stars align (need to see some numbers, but the fact that the 2nd Ely race was cancelled says things are not all sunshine and rainbows) it might almost be a more affordable and easier way to enter air racing.

    Also another thought is the High Sierra fly in shows you don't need the races to be in a densely populated area to make a popular event. High Sierra and Reno are different, but maybe a closed to the public qualifier event opens up some new airports. Then instead of close to a city(but not too close), lots of long runways, and not too busy that it can't be shut down during the races. If you lose the first requirement, maybe options open up?

    Way off topic: I guess we could revert to seaplane racing and fly off the coast of major cities like Red Bull did...
    "young" Thomas

  10. #50
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    Default Re: What If....2021

    Quote Originally Posted by CubersWrist View Post
    Does anyone know the logistics involved with the Ely races?
    I gather like 50 people showed up, but if the slower racers need a qualifier/consolation event, I wonder if there are some options there. It's obviously big enough an area for the IF1/biplane course. I wonder if it's big enough for the bronze/medallion sport course?

    This qualifier/consolation event doesn't need to be open to the public to limit risk of collateral damage and hopefully help with insurance cost. If the stars align (need to see some numbers, but the fact that the 2nd Ely race was cancelled says things are not all sunshine and rainbows) it might almost be a more affordable and easier way to enter air racing.

    Also another thought is the High Sierra fly in shows you don't need the races to be in a densely populated area to make a popular event. High Sierra and Reno are different, but maybe a closed to the public qualifier event opens up some new airports. Then instead of close to a city(but not too close), lots of long runways, and not too busy that it can't be shut down during the races. If you lose the first requirement, maybe options open up?

    Way off topic: I guess we could revert to seaplane racing and fly off the coast of major cities like Red Bull did...
    Wish I could opine on Ely but don't have anything to offer there. RARA has talked about expanding its footprint but one has to wonder about how realistic that may be, given the current situation. Might be an option to look into however.

    Good one about Red Bull! How'd that work out...
    Owen Ashurst
    Performer Air Boss - Reno Air Races
    http://airbossone.com/

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