Aerobatics display planned in Airlie
WHITSUNDAY residents are advised to keep their eyes on the skies next Thursday afternoon when current Australian Unlimited Aerobatic Champion Paul Bennet is scheduled to perform an aerobatics display above Airlie Beach.
Mr Bennet will be arriving at the Whitsunday Airport on Thursday, March 27, in a Pitts Special S1C racer aircraft, he is delivering for the Cannonvale-based company F1 Aviation.
F1 Aviation owner Peter Phipps said the Pitts Special was a unique aircraft with a history of racing at the famous Reno Pylon Races in Nevada USA.
“It has qualified for the bi-plane races at 195 miles per hour around the pylons and is capable of doing 220mph level and straight,” he said.
Mr Phipps’ new plane is the only Pitts Special painted in WWII colours of silver with black and white stripes and the US star and bar - similar to many of the colours worn by P51 Mustangs during the European campaign.
Next week’s show over Airlie Beach is Mr Phipps’ way of introducing F1 Aviation and its future plans to the local community.
Under the name of F1AirRacing, Mr Phipps hopes to establish both the world’s first dedicated Pylon Race Circuit and a race series in Australia.
He says F1Aviation has searched along the Australian east coast, identifying several possible sites, with the best being here in the Whitsundays.
“Our preference remains here in the Whitsundays, but there are many other factors to take into account such as local, state and federal government support for such a project,” he said.
Mr Phipps said holding a race series in the region would bring significant returns to the community with the potential to attract 20,000 fans and a direct injection of more than $5 million to the local economy.
Next week’s aerobatics display will be weather dependant. If all goes to plan, it will take place over the water off Airlie Beach in the mid-afternoon.
AIR SHOW: Current Australian unlimited aerobatic champion, Paul Bennet, is expected to perform an aerobatic display above Airlie Beach next Thursday, March 27 in this Pitts Special S1C racer aircraft, which he is also delivering to the Whitsundays.