welcome to the auspicous site of Theresa Bower  
air race  

The Vegas Showbirds on the seventh day of the trip, and the FIRST day of this 4 day race!

Tuesday, June 19th - The Vegas Showbirds start early on the first day of the race.
We take off at Wiley Post airport in Oklahoma City. The first leg ends at the McCook Airport,
in McCook, Nebraska. The second leg ends at Denison Airport, in Denison Iowa.

waiting to start  

The race teams gather at Atlantic Aviation before the race.
Adrenaline builds moments before takeoff, as the planes
are packed with baggage, charts and equipment.

Each of the race teams will use "CLASSIC" before
their race team number as their call sign during the race.
parked aircraft

The aircraft are taken out of quarantine
(where they have been since inspection on Friday
and Saturday). Racers are now allowed to load their baggage and set up their equipment (hand held
radios, GPS, charts, etc.)

It's just moments before the race . . .


Kathleen and Mardell stand behind the tail of the
Mooney "Classic 30" aircraft. The control tower at
Wiley Post Airport in Oklahoma City is at the right.
In front of the tower are several hundred people
awaiting the start of the race.

After leaving Oklahoma City, we fly through Kansas, heading for the first stop at McCook Airport, in Nebraska, the racers are close together as they
travel the 313 miles between Oklahoma City and
McCook Nebraska.
This photo was taken at 2,500 miles above ground
level out the right window of the aircraft, as we pass
Classic 4 (aircraft is on the right, barely visible in
the haze).


After landing at McCook Airport, we taxi to transient
parking. Due to overcast conditions, some racers
decide to stay over night, some racers decide to go ahead and continue immediately, and we decide to
wait and get the latest weather updates. . . turns out
to be a good choice. We take off a couple hours later.


Red Willow Aviation services provided quick, efficient fuel,
with a smile and great hospitality. We checked weather and
met with the local people from McCook. They provided us with fresh veggies, sandwiches, and home baked cookies!!
This is the second time the air race has stopped at McCook.
The first time was in 1971 and Marion Larman (pictured here
in front of the flight service office), was the stop chair for McCook that year. She enjoyed watching the planes come in, along with several dozen local residents. We made the news
here in McCook, and the newspaper featured an article on
the race.
Linda Tug

When parking on the grass after a rain, gravity
may play a factor here. Linda Marshall of Boseman, Montana, and Margie Richardson of Oklahoma City, Classic 36, tug their aircraft out of some mushy turf.
Yesterday they were on the front page of The
Oklahoman (newspaper) . . . today they tug in mud.

Platt River

The Platt River runs east / west. This photo was taken
out the right side of the aircraft near the city of
Grand Island, Nebraska.

The clouds slowly dissapated yielding blue skies
as the race continues eastward.

landing Denison  

Landing on runway 12 at Denison Airport, in Denison, Iowa.
Some of the racers had mechanical difficulties and had to
fix their aircraft.

Classic 30 decides to call it a day, and stay overnight in
Denison, Iowa. We will start out early tomorrow for Missouri.

The hangar at Denison Airport provides a serene backdrop
for a Cessna taking off. This first day of the race was full of
unpredictable weather, high speed racing, and precise navigation (Global Positioning Systems are a good thing).
tie down  

The Mooney gets pushed into transient parking
and tied down for the night. Kathleen lines up the
aircraft wingtips to line up with the tie down hooks.

Previous day, Monday, June 18th
Next day, Wednesday, June 20th