20 May 2012

24th June 1971

N4801B 59n 10w 1747 F090 BEN/Benbecula 1831 endurance 05+00, at 10w call Scottish on 124.5 VHF.

Dr. P.W. Reames, Cessna 310C, N4801B

[List of participants, with image of N4801B inserted, from 'Flight International' - 1st July 1971]

This aircraft was heading to RAF Abingdon, UK to participate in the London, UK to Victoria, BC 5,851 mile Air Race, due to start at 18:00 GMT on 1st July 1971. This was the third only trans-ocean, trans-continent race in aviation history. Unlike the 1934 and 1966 air races, this event puts the emphasis on piloting skills and aircraft efficiency rather than the limit of human endurance.
The route is divided into five sectors (1) UK to Goose Bay, via Prestwick (2) Goose Bay to Ottawa, via Quebec (3) Ottawa to Winnipeg (4) Winnipeg to Calgary, via Regina (5) Calgary to Victoria.

Sixty eight aircraft started the race but by the third stage this was down to 53. The ultimate winner, Mr. Blumeschein, stated on landing at Winnipeg that "my hands are still shaking from the turbulence, it's been miserable up there but each one of the legs of the race is just as bad as the other".

Dr. Reames' Cessna carried entry number 81 and won 3rd overall place when the results were announced. For the record, 1st was number 42, a Merlin III (D-IBMG) and 2nd place went to number 69, a Twin Comanche 160C (EI-AVD) flow by an Irishman, Tim Philips.

[I also heard N8513P called by Shanwick on the 24th, (a Comanche 400, number 38) heading for the UK but no position report was copied]

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