Matt Gunsch wrote:
Oct. '83 issue of WHAT?
air comics.... aka air classics
For the record, the pilot's name was Joe Guthrie, who was working for Flight Systems at Mojave. There are two sides to the story, but the jist of it is what was supposed to be a 'high speed taxi' down the runway, coupled with a serious aft c.g. situation that the owners claim they knew about, resulted in a very unstable aircraft becoming 'airborne'...at which time the pilot proceeded to wrestle the aircraft around the pattern and land it.
He was either 'dismissed' for not following orders, or quit not wanting to kill himself in a death trap. You choose.
Skip Holm never flew Wildfire...but only because he didn't get a chance to, not because he was afraid to. They were doing some high power run up's on the engine out at Mojave back in the mid-late 80's, and the aircraft was situated with it's back to one of the hangers. The propwash bounced off the hanger and 'lifted' the tail of the plane up suddenly--dinging one of the prop blades.
Though the owners have said that they switched from a 4 bladed prop to a 3 bladed prop because it was 'more efficient', I think the real reason is, they only had 3 blades to work with after the 4th was nicked badly.
I'm actually kind of excited that this project may be coming to fruition. I don't care if they fly around in last place in the Bronze...just the fact that they show up and fulfill a 30 year dream-in-the-making is 'winning' enough for me!