The National Aeronautic Association (NAA) recently announced its list of the Most Memorable Records of 2004.
The “most memorable” are just a few of the dozens of records set last year and include:
– Mike Keenum set a record for piston engine aircraft over a closed circuit of 100 kilometers (62 miles) without payload in a unique aircraft: “Riff Raff,” a Hawker Sea Fury that Keenum restored to flying condition and flies each year at the Reno Air Races. On Oct. 4,
Keenum flew at an average speed of 370 miles per hour, more than 100 miles faster than the previous record set almost 30 years ago.
– Pilot Carl Harbuck and copilot Douglas McFadden established new records for duration for six subclasses of gas airships, flying 24 hours, 39 minutes and 55 seconds. Their Sept. 14 flight eclipsed the previous record by more than 10 hours.
– Matt Brooks, Fred Lohden and Tim Weber set a record for speed around the world (westbound) with an average speed of 199 miles per hour in a Cessna 501 Citation I/SP. The May 17 flight, which began and ended in Teterboro, N.J., took 114 hours, included 23 stops, overflew 39 countries and landed in 17 countries.
– Mike Melvill set one of several records now held by SpaceShipOne, the first privately funded manned craft to reach space. On SS1’s first flight into space, he broke the record of the X-15 for altitude, aeroplane launched from a ship. After being launched from its carrier ship, SS1 climbed an additional 281,310 feet.
– SS1’s second entry came on Oct. 4, when it established a new mark for a new record: Minimum Time Between Two Consecutive Flights in a Reusable Vehicle for Class P (aerospacecraft). Brian Binnie flew SS1 to outerspace 95 hours, 15 minutes and 8 seconds after Melvill had made a flight there aboard the same craft. That feat also earned the SS1 team the $10 million X-Prize.
– Andy Keech set a record for altitude in autogyros on April 20 in Frederick, Md. He took his autogyro, nicknamed “Woodstock,” to a height of 26,408 feet, beating a seven-year-old record by nearly 2,000 feet.
– Leonardo Benetti-Longhini flew his glider a record distance on July 10.
He established a free distance record for ultralight gliders by flying 389 miles in his Alisport Silent 2, besting the previous record by 74 miles.