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Bringing Home the (Bendix) Bacon

RUN FOR AERIAL ROSES started from Ontario, California, for LANA Three, third of five F4H-1's to launch on Bendix Trophy try.

FIRST OF THREE refuelings by LANA Three took place over Albuquerque. Tankers from VAH-1,4,9, and VA-72, 86 and 125 supported this phase of project which saw records fall.

By Lt. A.J. Da Rodda
Fighter Squadron 74

UNTIL THE MAJORITY of Mr. McDonnell's fabulously fast fighters involved in Project Lana——appropriately dubbed Phantom II's——had come home to NAS NEW YORK on 24 May in response to the relatively ancient aerial lure of the Bendix Trophy, the issue was never in doubt.

The 'issue' was a transcontinental speed record of three hours, seven minutes, 43 seconds last etched in the coveted trophy's base by still another McDonnell product, the Voodoo in 1957.

Probably no race of its type ever produced so many winners——turned losers in so short a period of time.

Cdr. Julian S. Lake, Commanding Officer of Fighter Squadron 74 based at NAS OCEANA, Va., and his Radar Intercept Officer (RIO), Ltjg. E. A. Cowart, also from VF-74, were the first of five Phantom II's airborne from Ontario, Calif., at 1059 EDST. They landed in New York at the Naval Air Station at 1402 and for a few minutes held the unofficial transcontinental speed record of three hours, 3 minutes

TRIUMPHANT VF-121 team of Lt. Gordon, pilot, and Ltjg. Young, Radar Intercept Officer, taxies at NAS New York after 2445.9 mile dash at an average speed of 869.739 mph. McDonnell twin-jet, carrier-based fighter pulled "off the line" made flight in normal configuration.

6                                    NAVAL AVIATION NEWS
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