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August, 1931     U. S. AIR SERVICES     39


the newly-planned closed race course. The ten-mile course will be kite-shaped with the large end of the kite described by three pylons at the northern end of the grandstands. The home pylon, forming the eastern axis of the kite, will be 800 feet out from the center line of the stands and administration building. The narrow end of the kite will be south of the stand and race spectators will see racing planes over three-fifths of the entire course as they come in from the south and make a sweeping, almost continual, turn in a counter-clockwise direction around the home pylon and large end of the course.
   The entire races are composed of 42 closed course events, 12 special events (Speed dashes,) two handicap derbies from the Pacific Coast to Cleveland and a free-for-all mixed derby over a similar course.
   Carl F. Lienesch, of San Diego, Cal., has been appointed chairman of the Women's National Sweepstakes derby from the Pacific Coast to Cleveland. Other names listed on the contest committee include: Maj. E. H. Zistell, Commanding Officer, 112th Observation Squadron, Ohio National Guard, chief judge; Floyed Logan, honorary judge; Ray Collins, chief starter; Carl Schory, chief timer; Frank Burnside, chief scorer; Capt. Oldin Richardson, head of the technical committee; William C. Whitehead, in charge of field, course and supply section; and Ray Brown, operation chief.
   One high point at the races this summer will be the flying of the Cleveland Pneumatic Aerol Trophy Free-for=all Race for women pilots only. This will be a high speed event over 5 laps of a 10-mile closed course and the Aerol Trophy, first put up for the famous woman's "powder puff" derby from Santa Monica, Cal., to Cleveland in 1929, will continue to be at stake in this new free-for-all event. Speeds ranging from 175 to 250 miles an hour have been predicted for the winning aviatrix. A purse of $7,500 goes with the trophy. Entrants must make a speed of at least 140 miles an hour over a straight mile course to qualify. The Aerol race is scheduled for September 4, a day largely devoted to the flying of women's races.

THE outstanding land plane speed race of the world, the Charles E. Thompson Trophy Race, a free-for-all event over 10 laps of a 10-mile closed course, carrying a purse of $15,000 besides the beautiful trophy, will be flown on Labor Day, September 7, the final day of the races. To the aeronautical industry, this high speed event is of paramount interest and importance. It bears a similar relation to engine and plane design as does the Indianapolis 500-mile annual automobile racing classic to motor car design and construction.
   Last year, over a shorter course-one of 5-mile laps-the late "Speed" Holman averaged a little better than 201 miles an hour to win the race. This year, over the longer 10-mile laps, much higher speeds are expected. Planes have been speeded up, through the very lessons learned in the 1930 Thompson Race, 20 to 30 miles faster. Predictions have mentioned speeds in excess of 250 miles an hour for craft designed to compete in this race.
Great secrecy has pervaded the building of "mystery" racing ships this year. The names of pilots who possibly may be seen in the Thompson Trophy Race include such noted flyers as Maj. Jimmie Doolittle, who said he'd like one more chance at the trophy before retiring from X racing to please his wife; Lieut. Al Williams, who continues to hold the American speed record of 266 miles an hour; Harry Williams, noted Louisiana sportsman-pilot who recently said his pet racing plane had been flown at a speed of 286 miles an hour; Wiley Post, round-the-world record holder; Doug X Davis, Atlanta, Ga., speedster who introduced the famous Travelair Mystery S plane to the 1929 races, winning at an average speed of nearly 200 miles an hour; Benny Howard, Jimmie Haizlip, Art Davis, Leep Shoenhair, Frank Hawks, Errett Williams, Robert L. Hall, and many others.

EVERY day, except the two assigned the Aerol and Thompson Races, speed dashes over a measured mile, straightaway course in front of the stands will be run off. Prior to their races, one Thompson and one Aerol entrant will run off their qualifying dashes over this course each day. The mile speed dashes are a new feature this year, and there are 12 of the dashes providing for all displacement classes. Records will be established in each cubic inch class and these will be known as American Air Race records, to be contested annually.
   In special Events Nos. 108 and 111, qualifying dashes for the Thompson and Aerol Trophies, new records for land plane speeds probably will be established for both men and women. September 6 has been set aside as a day for special attempts to establish such world speed records.
   The day-by-day program carries a pretentious night flying schedule. Every evening, after a band concert, extensive night flight exhibitions will be given together with elaborate pyrotechnic displays.

COLOR and élan will be lent to the social glamour of the box seat section by the presence of distinguished Army, Navy, and Marine Corps officers and military observers from foreign legations of the Capital.
   The Autogiro has been assigned a primary post on the race program. Six of these interesting craft will be in daily competitive and exhibition events. They will not be entered in speed contests. Several of these machines will be entered by companies who have already had the ships in operation for many weeks. A detachment of Autogiros will fly here from Willow Grove, Pa., home of the Pitcairn Aircraft, Inc., plant.
   The $100,000 construction program, which includes the erection of a permanent grandstand and administration building for the accommodation of 50,000 spectators, is scheduled to be finished on August 15. This program was planned to fill the needs of the five-year term during which the National Air Races are to be held at Cleveland Airport. The executive group directing the races this year is headed by L. W. Greve, president of the organization sponsoring the races; Clifford Gildersleeve, executive vice-president and Clifford Henderson, managing director.
   Mr. Henderson says he expects about 1,000 airplanes, visiting and contesting, to be at the races. He estimates there will be fully 200 competing planes.
   A new contest ruling has just been announced: no flyer may participate in the National Air Races who has not had 150 hours of solo flying time, at least 50 of which have been cross-country flying.
   It promises to be a good show in good hands and invigorating climate.
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