The North American P-51 Mustang
Reno 2007
Home Unlimiteds Others Gold V-12 Future Eternal Flights
P-51 Mustang at Reno 2007
Unlimiteds - Bronze, Silver
story and photos by Curtis Fowles

The Silver and Bronze Unlimited qualifying results:

#114 Argonaut - 408
#31 Sea Hawk - 413
#38 Precious Metal - 411
#911 September Pops - 403
#14 Bearcat - 399
#224 Blue Bear - 397
#33 Steadfast - 383
#22 Merlin's Magic - 373
#1 Big Bossman - 371
#57 Super Corsair - 367
#23 Tempus Fugit II - 366
#44 Sparky - 365
#11 Miss America - 359
#00 Luscious Lisa - 353
#9 Cloud Dancer - 346
#31 Speedball Alice - 343
#81 Lady Jo - 340
#19 Shiska Suka - 308
#2 Air Biscuit - 303
#18 Grim Reaper - 00

RN7_0013wt.jpg RN7_0025dt.jpg RN7_0029dt.jpg RN7_0035dt.jpg RN7_0036wt.jpg RN7_6133wt.jpg RN7_6210wt.jpg RN7_6324wt.jpg RN7_6381wt.jpg RN7_6388wt.jpg RN7_6498wt.jpg RN7_6661wt.jpg RN7_6664wt.jpg RN7_6667wt.jpg RN7_6703wt.jpg RN7_6718wt.jpg RN7_6721wt.jpg RN7_6730wt.jpg RN7_6755wt.jpg RN7_6763wt.jpg RN7_6818wt.jpg RN7_6986wt.jpg

This year was fun to watch the Bronze class with some new additions:

Blue Bear, #224, Ray Dieckman, F8F Bearcat
Tempus Fugit II, #23, Providence Fighter Sales, Dave Morss pilot,
   F8F Bearcat
Luscious Lisa, #00, Todd Stuart, Fred Cabanas pilot, P-51D Mustang
Grim Reaper, #18, Sal Rubino, Curt Brown pilot, P-51D Mustang

Missing from the field was P-51D Ole Yeller - John Bagley. As you can see, the speeds are pretty close and provide some nice and close racing in both classes. Bagley and Mike Brown in his Tigercat used to fly some close races. In fact, I remember seeing some tight racing with Jimmy Leeward and Brown's Tigercat and also Merlin's Magic and Big Bossman.

Thursday's Medallion Heat 1C saw some killer low-level racing between Jimmy Leeward in Cloud Dancer and Fred Cabanas in Luscious Lisa. Only suprise in this Heat was Brent Hisey in Miss America was DQd for cutting the west deadline. The Bronze Heat 1B had three Bearcats, a Tigercat, the Super Corsair, a Yak and a Mustang! What a grouping. Bob Odegaard in his Super Corsair was DQd for cutting the runway deadline. The Silver Heat 1A (last of the day) was all Sea Furies and Ron Buccarelli in Precious Metal. Buccarelli was DQd for cutting the east guide pylon. This heat was the last racing of the week for Precious Metal. Stewart Dawson won the heat looking very smooth at 425 mph.

On Friday, all racing was suspended after the Formula 1 midair between Jason Somes and Gary Hubler.

On Saturday, Jimmy Leeward won the Bronze 3C heat after some tight flying with Brown's Tigercat. Fred Cabanas remained a pylon photographer's friend as he came by cutting the sage each time. That was fun to watch. Nelson Ezell won the Silver Heat 3B in #13 Fury even after the penalty for cutting pylon 6.

RN7_7023wt.jpg RN7_7038wt.jpg RN7_7043dt.jpg RN7_7543wt.jpg RN7_7555wt.jpg RN7_7560wt.jpg RN7_7572wt.jpg RN7_7575dt.jpg RN7_7581dt.jpg RN7_7587dt.jpg RN7_7599wt.jpg RN7_7604dt.jpg RN7_7613wvt.jpg RN7_7621wt.jpg RN7_7628wt.jpg RN7_7640dt.jpg RN7_7645wvt.jpg RN7_7651wt.jpg RN7_7923wt.jpg RN7_8031wt.jpg RN7_8037wt.jpg RN7_8064wt.jpg RN7_8115dt.jpg RN7_9136wt.jpg

The Bronze final on Sunday saw the return of both Howard Pardue and Brent Hisey who both missed Saturday. Pardue won with a speed of 389 mph but gave up the finish to compete in the Silver.

Final Unlimited Bronze:

1) Howard Pardue, #14, 389 mph - vacating for Silver
2) Brent Hisey, #11 Miss America, 359
3) Bob Odegaard, #57 Super Corsair, 352
4) Brant Seghetti, #44 Sparky, 331
5) Dan Vance, #31 Speedball Alice, 330
6) Rob Gordon, #81 Lady Jo, 319
7) Jim McKinstry, #19 Shiska Suka, 308
8) Tom Camp, #2 Air Biscuit, 280

Camp was fined for low flying (head below the top of the pylon!)

No safety problems during the Bronze or Silver finals on Sunday. Michael Brown had trouble with the Tigercat and did not race.

Final Unlimited Silver:

1) Joe Thibodeau, #21 Sea Hawk, 401
2) Dan Vance, #911 September Pops, 395
3) Ray Dieckman, #224 Blue Bear
4) Howard Pardue, #14, 387
5) Jimmy Leeward, #9 Cloud Dancer, 371
6) Will Whiteside, #33 Steadfast, 367
7) Stu Eberhardt, #22 Merlin's Magic, 360
8) Dave Morss, #23 Tempus Fugit II, 359
9) Fred Cabanas, #00 Luscious Lisa, 309
99) Mike Brown, #1 Big Bossman, 0.0

Once again Fred Cabanas took some killer photo lines coming around pylon 2. Thankfully we had a safe week of racing for the unlimiteds other than a few mechanicals. This year gave us an unlimited line-up that is hard to beat. All we need is a P-47, P-38, P39, P-63 and a P-40 to round things out. Well, I guess a Hellcat, Spit and Hurricane would be good too.

RN7_9337wt.jpg RN7_9342wt.jpg RN7_9345wt.jpg RN7_9362wt.jpg RN7_9384dt.jpg RN7_9386dt.jpg RN7_9423wt.jpg RN7_9428wt.jpg RN7_9430dt.jpg RN7_9440wt.jpg RN7_9522wt.jpg RN7_9530wt.jpg RN7_9533wt.jpg RN7_9534wt.jpg RN7_9543wt.jpg RN7_9573dt.jpg RN7_9582dt.jpg RN7_9982wt.jpg RN7_9983wt.jpg RN7_r0026wvt.jpg RN7_r0032wt.jpg RN7_r0047wvt.jpg RN7_r0194dt.jpg