WARBIRD RADIO – Our bags are packed and we’ll soon be in route to Las Vegas, Nevada for the 2013 International Council of Air Shows annual convention. The International Council of Air Shows held its first convention in 1967. Since then, the air show community has gathered every year to exchange ideas, conduct business and begin the process of planning the upcoming air show season. This year, the ICAS Convention will be held on December 2, 3, 4 & 5 at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Conference Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Tune in for updates throughout the week and a special episode of Warbird Radio LIVE broadcast from the convention floor. Warbird Radio will also be following future air show pilot and Stearman restorer Mike Porter during his first convention. As for the unveiling of the P-51 mystery owner…we wouldn’t miss it for the world. Stay tuned!
QUICK LINK: International Council of Air Shows
WARBIRD RADIO – A popular P-51 owner says he’s repainting his airplane to “reflect a more peaceful and harmonious idea of life, not war and destruction”. The owner, who wishes to remain anonymous until next week, tells Warbird Radio the decision comes after several months of self discovery and soul searching.
The new paint scheme will be unveiled at The International Council of Air Shows annual convention next week in Las Vegas. At this point, all we can say is the new design is purple and may or may not feature a unicorn and rainbow. The mystery owner went on to say his new act will feature a “nearly” carbon neutral foot print (new modified Merlin engine runs on ethanol auto gas) as well as an environmentally friendly finale’ using compressed air, not pyro, to launch thousands of flower petals into the air like confetti. The mystery owner says “the goal here is to really take it over the top” — as if the unicorn and rainbow wouldn’t be enough.
The current paint scheme has been prominently featured on calendars and magazines the world over and this new design will certainly draw some attention. When asked whether he’s worried about the public’s reaction the mystery owner said “yes, I’m always worried what people on those web forums will think about my airplane…but they’re not paying for it and they’re probably not paying rent to live in their mother’s basement.”
Warbird Radio asked professional air show photographer and graphic artist Kevin Hong with Sector K Media to develop a rendering based on the mystery owner’s comments. At first Kevin said there’s no way he’d desecrate a P-51 with a unicorn and rainbow, so we offered to pay him. The rendering above is what he developed. Believe it or not, crazier things have happened. Air show evangelist and veteran announcer Hugh Oldham says he once saw a half naked man holding what looked like a giant flag with a peace sign on it, gallop down a runway on a white stallion. Hugh says the man was nearly thrown from his horse as the A-10 finished it’s demo. When asked specifically about this new paint design Oldham said:
I always welcome innovation…but this is a little crazy. I mean come on…unicorns and rainbows? What am I going to say when he comes by the crowd line? Here comes horny?
Following an air show season filled with sequestration and government shutdowns, 2014 may quickly become the year of unicorns and rainbows, at least for one P-51. Stay tuned for more details as we continue to track this developing story.
STORY UPDATE: Warbird Radio recently learned (from sources close to the mystery owner) the aircraft’s name was not correctly depicted. The current rendition above is a better representation. We’re told the name is actually a primitive French word for “promoter of peace and tranquility.”
Feel free to post your comments below.
QUICK LINK: Sector K Media
QUICK LINK: Hugh Oldham’s Website
WARBIRD RADIO – On this episode of Warbird Radio Presents, Retired USAF Chief Master Sergeant Chuck Teston shares some life lessons with WRL’s Matt Jolley. Teston’s 31-year active duty career included being a Looking Glass flight crew member, academic instructor, first sergeant with the largest communications group in the Air Force, a Senior Enlisted Advisor at the wing and HQ level; superintendent of radio operations and a career advisor. Along the way Chief Teston helped pursue the infamous D.B. Cooper and even became an inductee to the Air Force Communications and Information Hall of Fame in 2007.
As the Air Force Communications Command senior enlisted advisor, he visited units at 57 different locations and formed an effective Chief’s Group to enhance career progression of all enlisted personnel. After retirement and another 10 years as an industry telecommunications manager, he moved his family to Gulfport, Miss., where he was elected to the Gulfport City Council and served as President in 2003. A Gulf Coast Chamber of Commerce Centurion, he was elected president of the Orange Grove/Lyman Chamber of Commerce for 2007 (USAF Press Release) . Thanks for tuning in!
USAF Photo by Kemberly Groue
WARBIRDRADIO – Dave Homewood is back with another great show. Listen in as Dave talks fighter jets with former New Zealand aviator Bernie Lewis. In his prime, Bernie was no stranger to the F-86 cockpit seen above (photo USAF Museum).
For more information on the Wings Over New Zealand Show just click on the Quick Link posted below. Thanks for tuning in.
QUICK LINK: Wings Over New Zealand
WARBIRD RADIO – Historians Amanda Lyons and Will Morgan from the Mississippi Department of Archives and History join Matt Jolley on this special episode of Warbird Radio LIVE. Learn about a new documentary chronicling the experiences of Dutch pilots who trained in Jackson, Mississippi during WWII.
This in-depth look at not only the pilot’s service history but their life following WWII can be seen by clicking the Quick Link below. Our thanks to MPB for making Dutch Wings Over Jackson possible. Additionally, Matt will visit with Stearman bi-plane expert Mike Porter before he attends his first International Council of Air Shows conference in Las Vegas. Warbird Radio will follow Mike as he learns the air show business during his first season as a hopeful performer.
Thanks for tuning in!
QUICK LINK: Dutch Wings Over Jackson
QUICK LINK: International Council of Air Shows
QUICK LINK: Air Speed (Steve’s Website)