Each year, the National Aeronautic Association tracks dozens of world and national record attempts. New U.S. records are certified and those qualifying as world records are then ratified with the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI). At the end of each year, under the direction of the Contest and Records Department, a list of the “most memorable” is created. The Class of 2010 includes an 82-year-old homebuilder to a Reno racer:
- Arnold Ebneter set a distance record from Everett, Wash., to Fredericksburg, Va., a distance of 2,327 miles. Ebneter, 82 years old at the time of the record, personally designed and built the airplane he flew.
- An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle remotely piloted by Christopher Kelleher and the Qinetiq HALE team set an absolute record for duration of 14 days, 22 minutes.
- John Parker flies a 3/4 scale P-51 Mustang known as a Thunder Mustang. In June 2010 he flew it over a 100-kilometer closed course at 364 mph, smashing the 35-year-old speed record of 282 mph.
- James Dexter piloted a new technology Zeppelin airship 441 miles non-stop along the scenic California coast, setting a new gas airship distance record.
- During the U.S. Air Force’s celebration of the 25th anniversary of the B-1 Bomber, four USAF pilots set a new time to climb record, besting the 1993 record by more than 9 minutes; quite a feat with 5,000 kilograms of payload on board.
- 41 women skydivers beat the previous record of 20 women skydivers in a head-down formation over Eloy, Ariz., in November.
- Douglas Cairns spent 5 days, 15 hours and 16 minutes in his Beechcraft Baron 58 visiting all 50 states and District of Columbia, beating the previous record by more than 8 days.
For more information: NAA.aero