DAHER-SOCATA has posted video highlights of the air race challenge between its TBM 850 and a World War II P-51 Mustang fighter, which occurred during this summer’s AirVenture in Oshkosh.
The race was held July 29 as part of the company’s celebration marking 100 years of continuous manufacturing by the company and its predecessors. Video highlights are now posted on the TBM 850 website
The friendly fly-off was performed over a traditional 6-lap course utilized in the National Air Race Championships’ Unlimited category to find out which was faster: The turboprop-powered TBM 850, or the North American P-51, which is one of the fastest single-engine piston aircraft of all time.
The TBM 850 was provided for the race by its owner, Steve Walenz of Spirit Lakes, Iowa, and was flown by Bob Odegaard, a renowned National Air Race Championship pilot.
Providing the competition was a P-51D-30NA, which carries the “Gentleman Jim” markings to honor World War II fighter ace Capt. Jim Browning, who went missing in action during 1945. This aircraft is owned by Jack Roush of the Roush Industries research and development company, which is well known for its sponsorship of a NASCAR car racing team. The P-51 was flown in the race by Jimmy Leeward, a legend of the Reno Air Races and real estate developer, who also is a Hollywood movie industry stunt pilot.
For the race results, the TBM 850 crossed the finish line a few seconds ahead of the P-51, enabling both pilots to underscore their flying skills and the capabilities of their aircraft.