RE: Warbirds Over Iowa 2012
Warbirds over Iowa 2012 was a great time! The Cedar Rapids Skyhawks outdid themselves with hospitality, a fantastic place to fly and they even special ordered no-wind conditions all day Saturday. Thanks to everyone involved for a great time.
Below is a link to a Youtube video of Steve Forrest and I flying our Mustangs on Sunday. Video supplied by Dennis Johnson...
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RE: Warbirds Over Iowa 2012
Sorry I missed everyone this year! For that reason, let's see some pictures, too!
Lyle, are you going to the Tulsa Warbird event later this summer (in Sept, I think)? Hopefully we can catch up at another event soon.
RE: Warbirds Over Iowa 2012
Here's a report out for Warbirds Over Iowa. Photo DVD's will be sent to participants. Some photos will also be attached here, and others can be viewed in the event report on RCU.
Warbirds Over Iowa Report – by Todd Davis, Contest Director
The ninth annual Warbirds Over Iowa military scale fly-in provided some nice flying weather that allowed the pilots to get in many excellent flights throughout the weekend. This is the first year where the event was held over two days, and even though some pilots only stayed for one day there was a wide variety of warbirds seen both days.
Lyle Vasser and Steve Forrest made the trip up from the Kansas City area and didn’t waste any time getting their aircraft into the sky. They both had Giant ScaleTop Flite P-51 Mustangs that allowed them to put on some impressive formation flying. The routine featured many scale maneuvers and low passes down the runway where both planes appeared to be just a couple of feet apart. The crowd appreciated the show, as did the judges who gave Lyle and Steve the “Best Flight” award. This is the first time the award has been given to a team, not just a single pilot. Steve also brought out his 140” wingspan B-29 bomber “Fi-Fi.” He had some nosewheel problems, but he still managed to get in multiple flights where he would open the bomb bay doors to drop the big one. Lyle also brought his impressive B-25J Mitchell. With a wingspan of 101” the aircraft was built from Ziroli plans by Lyle’s dad Bob. When Lyle went looking for scale pilots for the B-25, he could not find anything in 1/8 scale that fit his needs. That caused him to mold his own, and led to the start-up of “Best Pilots.” Now Lyle sells his impressive pilot figures all over the world and they can be seen in some of the best Top Gun aircraft. Lyle’s artistic ability was also evident in the scale details that have been applied to his B-25. As impressive as it appears on the ground, it also looked great in the air as Lyle performed many scale passes, and one that impressed everyone, the Doolittle take-off. Once he burned off some fuel, Lyle would land and perform a full power take off that had the wheels in the air after only a few feet of roll out. The impressive flights and scale appearance allowed Lyle to win the Pilot’s Choice award for his B-25J.
Skyhawks member Wendell Maakestad is well known for his excellent B-17 bombers, and he brought his “Man O War II” out once again. Warbirds Over Iowa wouldn’t be the same without a squadron of B-17’s, and this year was no exception as Wendell was joined by Mark Taylor and Dwayne Fosseen. The three bombers flew multiple missions and gave the spectators a good idea of what it must have looked like over the skies of Europe during WWII. The crowd on hand always delighted in watching the bombs drop as the pilots tried to put them on target (the announcer claimed he would pay $10 to the pilot who could set one directly on the centerline of the runway). Dwayne’s B-17 looked especially good both on the ground and in the air. The Veterans on hand to watch the show must have liked what they saw, because they awarded Dwayne the “Best WWII Aircraft” award.
There was no shortage of large P-51 mustangs at this year’s event, in addition to the pair flown by Lyle and Steve there was an large and in charge quarter scale Ziroli model flown by Mike Kaas, as well as a couple of Top Flite models flown by John Biondo and Terry Peterson. Terry’s Green nose Mustang had an impressive flight that drew comments from the crowd with low inverted passes and high speed runs. An engine out landing caused him to damage his prop and put an end to his flying much to the dismay of the spectators. John had some bad luck with his Mustang and a Byron T-6 that he brought out, but put plenty of flights on his PT-17 Steerman. P-47 Thunderbolts were also well represented at the event. Dennis Johnson brought his 96 inch wingspan Ziroli model “Mary Lou” on Sunday as well as a Byron P-47 brought by Bill Mausser and flown beautifully by Chris Kramer from Epworth. Chris has won awards at past events and always does a great job on the sticks. Some P-47’s that were part of Saturday’s action included Bob Ligrand’s Hanger 9 model and Wayne Messner’s built from a Top Flite kit.
There were plenty of biplanes in the air at this year’s event as well. There was one instance on Saturday where I grabbed my Albatros DIII and took to the sky with four other biplanes. Skyhawks member Geoff Barrance had his Flair ¼ scale Tiger Moth in the air, and every time up it looked great with realistic slow speed passes that only a large biplane can provide. Also in the air with me was a couple of Great Planes PT-17 Stearmans including one from Randy Lepsch. His model was powered by an OS 1.20 four stroke that provided realistic sound and power. Another nice German WWI aircraft at the field and Saturday was flown by Dennis Goodrich. Dennis’ Fokker DVII was built from a flair kit and may have been responsible for a lack of Sopwith pups at this year’s event. Jim Stickley’s five cylinder radial engine gave his Fleet Bipe a sound all its own. On Sunday Dennis Johnson’s 1/3 scale Fokker DVII was a site to behold. The 118” wingspan aircraft was built from a Balsa USA kit and featured an 80cc ZDZ gas engine. When Dennis brought it in for a smooth touchdown in the grass, you almost felt like you were back in 1918 during the war. The realism of Dennis’ Biplane both in the air and on the ground allowed him to win the Best Scale appearance award.
Even though I was busy through both days trying to keep things running I got plenty of planes into the air. I brought my 86” Don Smith Ki-61 out and had a great time chasing a Mustang or two. My BF-109 even got to chase Mark Taylor’s P-38 around for a while, although it was tough to stay on Mark’s tail as he decided to take some radical evasive maneuvers at one point. My TS-11 Iskra jet was in the air a few times and is always a joy to fly. My Fly Eagle Jets F-15 is not such a joy, but always exciting. I got it up and down a couple times each day without the need for repairs indicating the landings were acceptable.
Although I tended to concentrate on the flight line action, I did notice a steady stream of spectators present though the event as well as a lot of interest at the Honor Flight booth and the Trainer information booth. The special trainer demonstration seemed to be appreciated by the spectators and gave them some insight into how to get into the hobby. The food provided by Hy-vee was good and some say they used half a bird on the chicken sandwiches they were serving. With good flying weather both days and no shortage of impressive aircraft this year’s Warbirds Over Iowa was a great success. Next year will be the 10th year, so we’ll have to pull out all the stops to make it even better. I am already working new trophy awards that anyone would be proud to display and provide a draw for some of the best aircraft and pilots in the area. Mark July 20th down on next year’s calendar and don’t miss it.