By Stan Alexander
It was a busy Friday with static judging and then during the afternoon, it was decided to go ahead and fly the first round of flight competition. Four flightlines were used all weekend and we were able to get in the first round that evening.
Saturday dawned and looked like a great day. CD John Boyko got things started as early as possible due to predicted storms on Sunday. He hoped we could finish the three last rounds on Saturday, and we did. It took ’til about 6:30 that evening to finish all of the flights.
One of the more impressive aircraft seen was Tim Dickey’s Fairchild PT-23, built from plans. Another was the F-16 by Frank Noll. The large Bob Violett Models jet was impressive in the air.
Then we come to what I call the little engine that could, Jack Buckley’s Mini Max model. Built to 1/3 scale, the Mini Max had an O.S. 90 for power and once again took first place in FAI F4C Scale. It is a simple model completed very carefully by expert hands and finished ahead of models costing many times what this one did. Add a great static score to some very good flying, and the winner stood out. We will see more about this model later.
Jack also went on to finish first in Designer Scale with his 155-inch wingspan Fairchild 24. The all scratch-built model flew very realistically slow and easy in the air. Finished in a two-tone color scheme, it was impressive in the air. It was also the largest model at the competition. Jack also took High Static in both F4C and Designer Scale.
Youngster Kaleb Spencer came to his first Nats and finished 1st in Fun Scale Novice. This class is designed to help bring in new modelers to Scale competition. Kaleb flew an Extra 260 to the class win. Welcome to the Scale Nationals!
There were many standout flights during the day. One competitor we haven’t seen in some time was Greg Hahn flying a new C-47 built from Ziroli plans. The model was powered by gas engines and featured operational parachute drops.
Saturday night, after all of the competition, we all got together in the McCullough Room at the AMA museum for awards for RC Scale and some special awards as well. Everyone had a great time and it truly had been a long day. So, as I sit here writing this with the rain pattering down now, I hope you’ve enjoyed the commentary on this year’s Nats.
Fair Skies & Tail Winds, Stan
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