The first peak of the fastest, youngest racing league in the world came yesterday, with the first Rocket Racing demonstration at the show.
The business model is very similar to NASCAR, and may bring new pilots to aviation along with television ratings. Contracts for coverage are being sorted now, and the first race could come by the end of 2009. Tight turns and fast climbs hinted at high action races during the display. On race days, pairs of aircraft will burst onto four-laps of five-mile "tracks," seen in their head-up displays and by computer animation on television.
League president and CEO Granger Whitelaw bought the company three months ago the fixed-gear airframe is a variant of the Velocity SE modified by XCOR specifically for the league.
They don't recruit pilots, Whitelaw says, rather they look over the many applications and recommend them to the six teams active today. "They will need to be experienced with jet propulsion, high thrust propulsion, and commercially certified on a glider as well," he explains.
Source: Flight International