Phantom To Appear At Reno

The late Tom Aberle taxis Phantom in from an evening Reno test session in this file photo.

Andrew Buehler, owner of the ultra-fast Biplane racer Phantom called to say he and Phantom will attend the National Championship Air Races in Reno next month as a static display.

His attendance was requested by the Reno Air Racing Association so there would be some Biplane representation at the final Reno air races. All hopes of the Biplanes running as a class are gone at this point; there was not enough time to form a “new” Biplane class after the resignation of the class’s leadership earlier this year. They had departed as part of the kerfuffle generated by a lawsuit brought by one Biplane race pilot.

Unconfirmed was news the lawsuit has been withdrawn and is now a dead issue, but again, too late to see the biplanes return to the last-ever Reno races.

All this means Phantom will appear this year as a static display—no exhibition runs are planned—with the airplane sited in its usual spot in the corner of the Biplane/F1 hangar.

While it was technically possible to run Phantom as a Sport class racer, Buehler chose not to exercise this option as Phantom is not optimized for the formation air starts used in Sport, plus he could not attend the Pylon Racing Seminar this year. Attendance at PRS was a requirement if for no other reason than Buehler would have been changing classes, Biplane to Sport.


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