A special thanks to the
Sisters of the Carmelite Monastery
in Des Plaines, IL. They offer their
prayers for the pilots at Reno
during the week of racing.

Reno 2015 - A Report from Race 70
by Karen Morss

This year would mark the debut of a Stewart Mustang racing in the Sport Class at Reno.
Her name is Beautiful Doll and Dave would be her pilot but first she needed to get to Reno.
No easy task coming all the way from Pensacola, FL with a rather new engine. Dave met Bill
Hudgens at Oshkosh and flew Beautiful Doll. He gave Bill a list of items to make Doll race
ready. Bill did an admirable job of getting her to her first race, on time and in great shape.
This preparation resulted in a week of trouble-free operation. All that was left was to see
how she did on the course.

So began our annual ten days at Stead, Nevada for the 52nd National Championship Air
Races. We had a new plane, new crew members, and lots of unknowns but we've been
here before. This would be Dave's 35th year racing at Reno and my 21st with him. I drove
up on Sunday in smoke so thick I wondered how they could possibly race. Bill and Dave
had arrived Friday and got the race numbers on the plane. Saturday she passed Tech
Inspection and was ready for her first practice.

David Jackson set up a telemetry system so Bill could monitor the engine and communicate
any issues directly to Dave. Rod Dill, who works with Bill in Florida, and Kyle Roh got to
work polishing and pretty soon we were looking like a race team.

At the hotel I asked Dave how she flew on the course. 'Just like a real Mustang, heavy like a
tractor.' How fast is she? I'm not sure. I think there's probably 18 planes faster than me and
18 slower. We'll see.

Monday morning the wind blew so hard, Biplane and Formula One racing was cancelled.
The wind blew more smoke into the valley so not only was it blowing, it was really smoky
(see takeoff photo on the right).  Tears were streaming down everyone's faces. I asked
Dave if he was worried about the wind as we drove out to the field around 7am. 'I'm not
worried about the wind flying Doll. She's got a wing-loading like a full size and she's not
going to be bothered by a little wind' (wife report: gusts at the top of Peavine were 70 kts)
As it turned out, that cold windy day was a pretty good one to qualify and Doll and Dave did
a very respectable 246.552 mph on the Sport Gold course qualifying 18th. Dave's best
quote of the week followed that flight, 'I never worked so hard, to go so slow." I think I'll
make him a shirt with that one.

Kent Rhodes, our crew chief, and Madeleine Kenny arrived Monday night after a marathon
12 hour drive so now we were all there. Tuesday and Wednesday were practice sessions
and polishing sessions. Kyle did a magnificent job making Doll gleam! Thursday and Friday
we raced in the Silver heats on the regular Sport course. We were tail end Charlie, not
enough speed to catch Shane Margraves and slow enough to get lapped by plenty of
airplanes. But she sounded great and sure looked pretty on the course! You could see her
shine as she flew along the far side of the course.

Saturday's pairings moved us to second place in the Bronze class - on the T6 course. In all
his years at Reno, Dave has never flown the T6 course. He wasn't really sure where it was
but some great advice from his fellow racers (thank you Kirk Murphy) put him on the right
track. He was able to get Louis Gabriel at the start, find the course and never looked back.
He won that race with a speed of 228.221. (Congratulations to Louis on winning the Rookie
of the Year!!!)  Our crew got to ride the Fire Truck in front of the grandstands which is as
much fun as winning the race. Well almost!

We got ready for Sunday. More polishing. More lemonade. More sandwiches. Sunday was
gorgeous, a perfect day for racing. The crowds had been great all week and they would be
treated to a magnificent Sunday of racing in all classes.  I am happy to report that Dave
held his position from the start and won the Bronze Race on Sunday with a speed of
229.865 mph. Another Fire Truck Ride for the crew! Thank you Bill Hudgens. Thanks for
bringing Beautiful Doll to the race. It was a great week for all of us.

NBC is doing a documentary about the race to air February. We had their camera in Doll all
week so we hope they will use some of our footage.

The best part of Reno is seeing our crew and our September family. This year was no
different. A big giant Thank You. And Thanks to everyone who comes out to cheer us on!
See you next September.

Karen Morss

PS Bill Hudgens was so enthusiastic about his first week at Reno, we expect to see him
registered at PRS in June. He's also encouraging other S51 owners to come out and play!

For more information about
the S51 Stewart Mustang,
please visit
Madeleine Kenny and Kent Rhodes
Michael Sweeney
Kyle Roh
David Jackson
Karen Morss
Sport Class awarded Karen a trophy for 18 years of support.

"I am deeply touched and honored beyond words. One of the great joys
in my life is being part of Sport Class Air Racing."

Karen Morss
Colleen Keller wins the
Race Angel Perpetual
Trophy for the Fastest
Woman in Sport Class!
Congratulations Colleen!
305.815 mph
Home for the week
Scotty Crandlemire
forever friend
Bill Hudgens
Photo Dan Whitney
Photo Dan Whitney
Photo Dan Whitney
Photo Dan Whitney
Photo Dan Whitney
Race 70 Team
(Missing Rod Dill)
Photo Dave Horn
Photo Kelly Dugan Rittenbach
Section 3 fans