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Participants arrive at Oshkosh following the 2007 AirVenture Cup Race.

Organizers of the AirVenture Cup Race to Oshkosh have announced a significant change in the racecourse for this year's 11th annual event for experimental aircraft. The 2008 race will begin in Mitchell, South Dakota, on Sunday, July 27, the day before EAA AirVenture Oshkosh opening day. The starting location will return to Dayton, Ohio, for 2009 and alternate with Mitchell in subsequent years.

The finish line will be in Dodge County, Wisconsin, south of Oshkosh, with aircraft gathering at that county's airport in Juneau (UNU) before proceeding on to Oshkosh later in the day.

The switch to Mitchell, home of the famed "Corn Palace," will allow competing pilots to take advantage of wide open airspace and prevailing westerly winds and perhaps create record speeds, said Eric Whyte, race chairman. "This change will also provide a better opportunity for EAA members living in the western United States to participate," he said.

The City of Mitchell, the airport manager, Wright Brothers Aviation FBO, and EAA members in South Dakota (including a group from Chapter 39 in Rapid City) have been working diligently to make this year's race a success, Whyte said. Local media is also making inquiries to provide coverage of the race start.

As in past races, participants will be divided into classes based on their engine size, as well as fixed verses retractable gear.

The classes include (all experimental):
  • Unlimited: Aircraft with a turbocharged engine and a displacement of 1,400 cubic inches (CI) or less. (Class winners named in both fixed and retractable gear.)
  • Sport Class: Normally aspirated aircraft (engine displacement of 1,000 cubic inches or less).
  • Sport FX: Normally aspirated aircraft with 550 CI - fixed landing gear for RV-10s, F-1 Rocket, Harmon Rocket II, etc.
  • Formula RG: Aircraft with 360 CI or less engine displacement, with retractable landing gear. Will be divided into a blue (360 CI) and Red (320 CI) classes.
  • Formula FX: Aircraft with an engine displacement of 360 CI or less, with at least two fixed landing gear. The category will be divided into Blue (360 CI) and Red (320 CI) classes.
  • Formula RV: Open to Van's aircraft RV-3, RV-4, RV-6, RV-6A, RV-7, RV-7A, RV-8, RV-8A, RV-9, and RV-9A airplanes powered with an engine of 360 CI or less. Will be split into a Blue (360 CI) and Red (320 CI) classes.
  • Sprint Class: Aircraft with an engine displacement of 240 CI or less.
  • Sportsman Class: Aircraft powered by a Volkswagen or Corvair engine conversion.

Deadline for applying for the 2008 AirVenture Cup Race is May 31, 2008. More information and race application forms are available at www.airventurecup.com. If you have other questions, e-mail Whyte at ewhyte@wi.rr.com.

 

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