- Electro Methods, Jet Engine Parts Manufacturer;
- Formosa Plastics, A global leader in petrochemicals, plastics and a variety of other industries;
- International Bank of Commerce, We Do More so you can do more online;
- Ladd Gardner Aviation Insurance Agency, Inc, Insurance, Financing & Sales;
- Lightspeed Aviation, ANR, Passive and In-The-Ear Pilot Headsets;
- The Port Lavaca Wave, Calhoun County’s Newspaper, As Constant As The Waves – Since 1890
- and David Hinckly.
The decision to delay the race by a day led into a plan to have everyone relocate to Alliance, NE, to resume the race. Everyone was left to their own devices, as long as they got there by noon. KIOW to KAIA was over 500 miles and many of the racers decided to go either halfway, or divert way south around the weather system, or, as we did, wait until morning. Jasmine and I met Dianna and Victoria at the airport and after they left (Jasmine is their PR person), we departed IFR. On an IFR flight plan. So what, you say?
|Citation X Panel|
|Cessna 182 Panel|
May I add, it was fuh-reezing up there. The temperature drops on average 2 degrees Celsius for every thousand feet of altitude. My passenger gets a little queasy and the heat was messing with her stomach.
Pilot Friend: A rule-of-thumb states that the airplane flies faster than indicated airspeed at altitudes above sea level by approximately 2-percent-per-thousand feet above sea level. This is a built-in compensator for reduced lift caused by the thin air at higher altitude airports.
I got slowed down early, down to traffic pattern altitude, turned final right on profile, and heard a warning over the radio to watch out for the crop dusters. Sure enough, as I was on base I told Jasmine to tell me if she saw that airplane short of the runway moved closer. Yup. I had hoped they'd be off before I came in, but I ended up also doing my first go-around in the mountains. I'm not sure the guy ever even looked in the direction of final to see if anyone was in the pattern. Grr.
Well, the hospitality was more than made up on the ramp. The marshaller was just as friendly as could be, and very happy to see anyone associated with the Air Race show up. He had cut a bunch of tiedowns for all the racer airplanes.... And the woman in the FBO gave us a couple of the hats that they had embroidered for the racers.... Oh, we felt so bad the race had passed them by! It unfortunately had another consequence. We had gone to Rawlins because we had hoped to do Girls With Wings promotion by offering to do the presentation. Even though only the race stop was canceled, the residents also must have assumed the presentation was also canceled. I did get to spend some time chatting with Minetta Gardiner, the woman who arranged the wonderful start activities and her co-pilot, Charissa A. Dyer-Kendler, a flight instructor at Sporty's Flight Academy, who were one of two teams who decided to do the whole race as scheduled.
I was so disappointed that we weren't able to meet any local girls at the stop. It wasn't for lack of trying. My success in finding opportunities for doing presentations has mostly been through pre-formed Girl Scout troops or other groups - and when school's out, this can be a tough, sometimes impossible, job. It's not the first time I've been stood up. It usually helps to get preregistration - a commitment - but there just wasn't time to arrange for it with the time frame we had (we have no idea how many would have showed in Jamestown since we couldn't make it there because of weather). We promoted Aviation Inspiration Day for MONTHS to get such a large crowd. And even when a group says there will be x number of girls, I can almost guarantee that 10-20% just won't show. Even if they've paid the $5 in advance. I don't know why that is. What could come along that would be better than the GWW presentation? I know, right??
Like I said, not for lack of trying. I've been watching Jasmine do the PR thing for some time now and am learning from her efforts. For years I have hoped that someone would volunteer to do marketing for Girls With Wings - I'm a pilot, not a PR expert! - because it takes up a huge amount of time. You've got to email, call, email and call again to get any response out of some people. I've been for the most part a one woman show working with my nose so close to the grindstone that what publicity I've gotten has been through luck finding someone supportive of the Girls With Wings mission. I spent years working on building the organization before I started to get enough cache to have my press releases published, and even now only sporadically. I think offering money for scholarships got the ball rolling getting the word out about the goals, but Girls With Wings does a lot more than that! Dianna's PR guru, Jasmine, has shown me how much work can go into promotion. She's had an amazing amount of success getting the word out about the Racing Aces, and therefore the Air Race Classic. If you go to the Racing Aces site you can see the many hits.
Here's hoping that the donation from Racing Aces will let us take it to the next level and increase the ability of Girls With Wings to reach out more - and to be able to handle the increased attention. But please. Wait til I'm done with the CFI checkride, ok? And then Oshkosh. I'll definitely have more free time after Oshkosh. :)