RENO, Nevada — The most beautiful, pristine and historical aircraft have graced the east end of Reno-Stead Airport for the last 16 years as contestants in the annual National Aviation Heritage Invitational. The Invitational is held in conjunction every year with the National Championship Air Races.
The Invitational gives aircraft owners and restorers the opportunity to bring their skillfully restored aircraft to the high desert of northern Nevada and compete for the prestigious Neil A. Armstrong Aviation Heritage Trophy.
“We are gearing up for another outstanding event,” said Ken Perich, Executive Director of the National Aviation Heritage Invitational. “We are thrilled to be working closely with the Pathways to Aviation Foundation and to playing a significant role in the National Championship Air Races non-racing events.”
The Invitational has been called the nation’s premiere traveling aviation museum. Admission to view the Invitational is open to anyone attending the Reno Air Races. Throughout race week spectators can take a walk through aviation history as they view a wide array of beautifully restored airplanes .
The National Aviation Heritage Invitational competition encourages the preservation and restoration of historic aircraft to airworthy condition and to the very highest standards of workmanship and historical accuracy.
Participants compete in four categories:
- Antique includes all eligible civil aircraft flying in 1945 and earlier. The winning aircraft will be awarded the Orville and Wilber Wright trophy;
- Classic includes all eligible civil aircraft flying in years 1946 to 1968. The winning aircraft will be awarded the Paul E. Garber trophy.
- Warbird includes all eligible military aircraft flying prior to 1968. The winning aircraft will be awarded the Henry “Hap” Arnold trophy.
- Large Aircraft includes all eligible aircraft, flying prior to 1968, both civil and military with wingspans of 45 feet or more. The winning aircraft will be awarded the Howard Hughes trophy
Each aircraft is judged on its technical merit and how well it represents the aircraft early in its career. Authenticity to the original manufacturer’s condition is the “gold standard” for each plane.
The National Aviation Hall of Fame’s ‘People’s Choice’ trophy is awarded to the owner of the aircraft which receives the most votes from the public reviewing the aircraft during the Invitational. Voting ends Saturday, Sept. 14, at 5 p.m. National Aviation Hall of Fame enshrinees Bob Hoover, Hoot Gibson, Herb Kelleher, Dick Rutan and Bud Anderson will assist in presenting awards.
“We are grateful and pleased to welcome back Presenting Sponsor, Perform Air,” said Perich. Perform Air is joined by Air & Space Smithsonian magazine, Pathways to Aviation Foundation, Air Transport World, ISTAT Foundation and Historic Flight Foundation in their dedication to the preservation of aviation history as 2014 trophy sponsors. Southwest Airlines joins this year as a supporter along with the Reno Air Racing Association, Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, Airmail Greetings, The Perich Group and LiveAirShow TV.
For more information: HeritageTrophy.com