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P-51 Crashes at Reno yesterday, kills pilot and spectators

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Very sad news day, Jimmy Leeward and his P-51 Galloping Ghost crashed near the spectator area yesterday killing himself and at least 2 others and injuring around 50 people. I've never seen the plane but Jimmy is from Ocala, FL about an hour away. He was a movie stunt pilot (Amelia, Clouddancer) and has been racing Reno since 1975. He was 74 years old and according to all accounts a great person and superb pilot.

Hopefully there isn't cries for Reno to end or old men to stop flying. There is pictures of the trim tab from the elevator being torn loose so it will be interesting to find out what the NTSB comes up with as far as the cause of this accident.

shawn a:
Sad day indeed.
I was packing to drive to Reno for the Sunday finals when I got e-mails and a phone call.
Based on the few photos and videos that I've seen, the elevator trim tab was definitely missing and another part of it was loose. This photo, allegedly taken at the last moment, shows the tailwheel down, and oddly enough, no pilot is visible.
I have heard that a Mayday was called, followed by the pull-up, and then the barrel roll into the ground. It may be possible that the pull-up caused G-loc.
My thoughts are saddened by the terrible loss of 9 people so far, and hope no more fatalities occur as a result of this accident.
Shawn A.

Sad is all I have to say about this for now.

--- Quote from: HaveBlue on September 17, 2011, 10:05:39 PM ---Hopefully there isn't cries for Reno to end or old men to stop flying.

--- End quote ---


shawn I agree, my thoughts are G-LOC might be part of the equation here. On a seperate note when I first saw pictures on of the 'pilotless airplane' certain scenarios went thru my head then I remembered YOU HAVE TO BE STRAPPED IN! So how could he slither down thru G's? Even in my lowly Cessna you by law have to be seatbelted in, and I would only imagine these racers are more likely 5 point harnessed in right?

This has to be the worst aviation/airshow season in years, with a
massive amount of (fatal) incidents/accidents in Europe and the US.

Sunday 17 September had another fatality with the crash of one T-28
Trojan, belonging to the Trojan Horseman team, during the "Thunder
over the Blue Ridge" airshow, killing the pilot.

Hopefully this is the last incident/accident in a already far to long list.
Thoughts and prayers to all...

Regards, Ramon


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