2021 U.S. National Aerobatic Championships
Photo Gallery * Video
Tuesday, September 21, 2021
Tuesday turned out to be a great day for the glider pilots to catch up and get back on schedule. The Intermediate gliders were up first. Shad Coulson continued his lead with a beautiful freestyle sequence that scored 80.21% . U.S. Air Force Academy cadet Alexander Presley moved up from 7th place to win a silver flight medal with his Freestyle score of 70.23%, followed by fellow cadet, Jared Bachman with a 69.33%.
During the Sportsman Freestyle, Andrew surpassed Sean’s performance and clinched first place with a score of 81.06 percent, and Dante Cyrus finished second with 79.96%. Sean was still in the hunt, though, and earned the bronze with 78.18%. (pictured below right)
The Advanced Glider pilots were also able to fly on Tuesday. Lt. Col. Jonathan Roe flew the U.S. Air Force Academy MDM Fox to first place in the Known with a score of 76.38 %. He was followed by civilian pilot Joseph Gerner, also flying a Fox with a score of 74.29 %. Cadet Jacob Szymanski came in third at 71.91%. (pictured below)
Monday, September 20, 2021
Everyone arrived at the briefing ready to go at 0700. Unfortunately mother nature had other ideas and the contest officials were forced to call for a delay due to high winds. Eventually the wind calmed down enough to for the Advanced and Unlimited power competitors to get back in the air and late in the afternoon the Sportsman power pilots were able to fly as the winds calmed. The Sportsman and Advanced glider pilots had to sit out the day.
The Advanced power pilots did a great job of flying the Knowns in less than desirable conditions, but their scores showed the effort they were making. Beside the top three finishers in the Known, the rest of the competitors had to settle for scores in the 60 percent and under range. Marty Flournoy in his MX2 came out on top in the known with a score of 75.86% followed by Matt Dunfee in his Extra 330SC with a score of 73.22% and Luke Penner in an Extra 300L placed third with a score of 71.76%
The Unlimited power pilots jumped into their freestyle program With Rob continuing to lead the pack by a good margin. He scored 84.07%, followed by Jeff Boerboon with a 78.93% score and Jim Bourke (Pictured) with in third with a 77.98% score.
Late afternoon winds had died down enough to allow the 20 Sportsman competitors to fly their Known sequence. Mike Hoy came out strong with a score of 86.35% in the Known flying his homebuilt Monosport 360. Joshua Gregg wasn't far behind with a score of 83.71% flying the MSU Aerobatic Team's Super Decathlon. In a very close third was Phillip Gragg flying his beautifully restored 1971 Pitts S-2A to a score of 83.05%,
Sunday, September 19, 2021
Intermediate Power followed the Unlimited category on opening day. Mike Lents successfully won first in the Known sequence flying his Super Decathlon scoring 84% against second-place finisher Craig Fitzgerald flying an Extra 300L who scored 83.12% and third-place finisher Tom Rhodes flying his CAP 232 scoring 81.33%.
The Intermediate Glider pilots were up next and saw first-time Nationals competitor Shad Coulson dominate the category. He set the tone in the Known sequence by scoring 80.21% in his Swift S-1. Andre Gerner placed second with 75.00% and U.S. Air Force cadet Jared Bachman followed in third with 75.00%.
September 19, 2021
The opening ceremony and first briefing of the U.S. National Aerobatic Championships took place this morning at 1100 central, in Salina Kansas. Shelli Swanson, Director of Administration and Finance from the Salina Airport Authority declared the Nationals OPEN!.
First up today are the Unlimited competitors. A total of The flying schedule can be found here: https://www.iac.org/nationals-2021-schedule . Times and flight order may change based on local conditions, so we will be updating the schedule nightly.
Photo by Gary Schenaman
It is less than two weeks until Nationals - the volunteers of the IAC will start to assemble in Salina to prepare the grounds for the 2021 U.S. National Aerobatic Championships. The purpose of this bulletin is to highlight some areas of interest to pilots competing at the event.
August 26, 2001
The following are the current recommendations by the Saline County Health Department. We will bear these recommendations in mind. You may see others wearing masks, especially in the registration area since it is an indoor venue.
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Get tested if you feel unwell, even if you don’t believe it is COVID. You can find testing centers at gogettested.com or contact your local medical provider.
- Get vaccinated. You can find a vaccine at vaccines.gov or contact your local medical provider.
- Wear a mask, especially if you are not fully vaccinated. If you are fully vaccinated, wear a mask when in-doors in crowded spaces.
- Maintain at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and those with whom you do not live.
- Do not travel to “hot spots."
- If you test positive, isolate immediately and be open and honest with COVID caseworkers about your contacts.
August 23, 2021
To: Advanced and Unlimited Pilots
From: 2021 U.S. Nationals Contest Director
Subj: P&P 503 U.S. National Aerobatic Championships
Part of becoming a National Champion is a clear understanding of the rules that apply on a given situation. It is the responsibility of the pilot to read and understand those rules. Please read the IAC Contest Rules 2021 and all Policy and Procedures that apply to the U.S. National Aerobatic Championships. These are listed on the IAC website.
Please pay special attention to P&P 503.4.3.4 which states…”Free Unknown figures must be chosen from the appropriate section of the CIVA rule book…….”. A link to the CIVA rule book has been added to the Nationals web page.
If you have not flown under CIVA rules or have never been on a U.S. Aerobatic Team, you may find a surprised or two such as: a tailslide is allowed in Advanced Unknowns and a snap on the ascending vertical line prior to a tailslide is allowed in Unlimited Unknowns. There may be others.
It is your responsibility to read and understand all rules.
I wish everyone a fun and safe contest with all 10’s.
U.S. Nationals Contest Director
CIVA Sporting Code SC6 Part 1
August 17, 2021
Volunteers continue to prepare for Nationals with monthly teleconferences. Meet the planning team and some of the Nationals officials;
|Doug Barlett, Contest Director||Justin Hickson, Assist. CD||Lynn Bowes, Hospitality|
|Lorrie Penner, U.S. Nationals Treasurer||Steve Kurtzahn, IAC Executive Director||Alice Johnson, Volunteer Coordinator|
|Liza Weaver, Registrar||Teri Branstittre, Scoring Director||Monique Hartmann, Communications Director|
|Keith Doyne, Safety Director||Dale Byrkit, Starter||Gary DeBaun, Practice Day Boxmaster|
|DJ Molny, Chief Judge - Advanced Category||Hector Ramirez, Chief Judge - Unlmiited Category||Peggy Riedinger, Chief Judge, Primary/Sportsman Categories|
|Tony & Julia Wood, Chief Judge team for Intermediate category||Debby Rihn-Harvey, Jury Chief||Steve Johnson, Assist. Jury Chief|
June 15, 2021
Thank you, the following IAC chapters, for sponsoring the morning coffee and doughnuts!
June 10, 2021
Hotels and Car Rentals
All three hotels have a discount rate of $99/night w/o tax. Please use the direct phone numbers and discount code provide on the Nationals Hotel webpage.
COVID-19 hit the rental car industry hard in 2020. They are still recovering, but we were able to make arrangements with a local Kansas auto dealership, Lewis Automotive, who purchased some rental cars from one of the companies that filed bankruptcy.
Please follow directions on renting these cars, it is very important to secure a good rate. If you go direct online with a car company you will not recieve a deal as good as the one we've made with Lewis Automotive. See all the details on the Car Rental webpage
May 14, 2021
Fuel discount - AVFlight is offering a discount of $0.25 per gallon from September 16 through September 25. Pilots are requested to pre-register prior to arrival with AVFlight by completing and emailing the provided form to: julie.yager-zuker [at] avflight.com.
April 15, 2021
Online registration for pilots and volunteers will open on June 15 at: Contests | International Aerobatic Club (iac.org).
Unofficial practice days with open slots, first come first serve, are September 16-17, Thursday and Friday. Pilots must be pre-registered or register on site for these practice slots. ALL PILOTS WILL READ AND SIGN THE PRACTICE WAIVER AND YOUR AIRCRAFT MUST BE TECH'D BEORE ENTERING THE BOX.
OFFICIAL practice days are September 18-19, Saturday and part of Sunday. To secure a confirmed time slot, pilots must be pre-registered and have paid their entry fee online. The process to pick a time slot is automated this year. After payment you will be directed to a web page to choose an available time slot.
GLIDER STORAGE: Hangar 703 was not available this year. Gliders will be hangared in H509. (on the other side of H600, which is next to Nationals HQ at H606).
News: Early Information
March 22, 2021
Preparations are well underway for the 2021 U.S. National Aerobatic Championships scheduled to be held 19-24 September. We anticipate a record turnout for 2021 Nationals! While much is left to be done, the Contest Director Doug Bartlett and his advance-prep team of Assistant CD Justin Hickson, Lorrie Penner, Steve Kurtzahn, and Lynn Bowes are releasing some preliminary information to help everyone in early planning.
Please understand that COVID can change any of these plans so we remain flexible as we work through the initial stages. We don't want to book a venue for a meal or event and find that it won't be available come September. Let's roll with it, please!
- The official contest dates are Sunday 19 September through Friday 24 September.
- U.S. Nationals will be held on the Salina Municipal Airport.
- Contest HQ for registration and all things Nationals-related is Hangar 606.
- The aerobatic box will open on Thursday 16 September through the start of contest. Info regarding practice slots will be provided at a later date.
- Early arrivals prior to Thursday will be directed to Schilling Aviation Services / AVFlight for hangar space and will make their own arrangements. Hangar 606 will NOT be open OFFICIALLY until Thursday.
- Competitors shall make their own arrangements for early practice or training camps at other local airports. Neither IAC nor the organizers of the U.S. Nationals will be making arrangements for other practice sites and the aerobatic box at Salina will not open until Thursday.
Lynn has visited Salina and is making arrangements for:
- Dry Creek Buffalo Ranch to provide a food truck during the week,
- a cash bar mixer at the Hilton Garden Inn, Sunday evening on the patio and reception bar area,
- a Taco Tuesday / Smoke Oil / Starter party in H606 after flying,
- the Medal Awards Dinner Thursday at the Hilton Garden Inn,
- and the Awards Banquet Friday with location to be determined.
Official U.S. Nationals HQ hotel is the Hilton Garden Inn. 3320 South 9th Street, Salina, Kansas 67401 - 785.823.9800 | The contest organizers have blocked 20 rooms at $99/night. Make your reservation online or call direct. Use RATE CODE : PILOT
Other hotels blocked for the room rate of $99/night
- Hampton Inn - 401 West Schilling Road - 785.823.9800 RATE CODE : PILOT
- Courtyard by Marriott - 3020 Riffel Dr, 785.309.1300 RATE CODE : PILOT
For other area hotels, were we have found offer participants points or military, AAA, AARP rates.
- Holiday Inn - 3145 South 9th Street - 785.404.6767
- Comfort Suites - 715 West Schilling Road - 785.404.6944
- Fairfield Inn & Suites - 2455 Virginia Drive - 785.515.5333
- KOA Campground is on I-70 https://koa.com/campgrounds/salina/
- RV Camping on the airport property is unavailable for 2021.
- information will be provided in a later announcement. Due to COVID-19, car rentals in Salina are very limited at this time. Pilots and volunteers will be encouraged to make preparations as early as possible.
We have not yet been notified regarding team selection. Information will be posted when it becomes available.
If you have specific questions, please call or email.
Doug Bartlett, U.S. National Aerobatic Championships Contest Director
847.875.3339 | doug.bartlett79 [at] gmail.com
November 20, 2020
News: 2020 U.S. National Aerobatic Championships are canceled
July 10, 2020
To our IAC members,
The IAC Board of Directors met by teleconference on Friday, 10 July 2020, to discuss the 2020 U.S. National Aerobatic Championships scheduled to be held in Salina, Kansas, 20-24 September 2020.
After much research, debate, and discussion with City of Salina officials and EAA leadership, the IAC Board of Directors has determined that it will be in the best interest of the safety of all who attend our U.S. Nationals that our premier event is cancelled for 2020.
We regret having this decision to make and believe that with safety as our focus in all matters of our sport, to continue without knowing what mid-September will bring in terms of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic would be irresponsible. The “go/no go” date was moved ahead because we believe that IAC members deserve to know as early as possible so that they can make other plans with family, business, and school.
As much as anyone, IAC leaders don’t like being forced to make the decision to cancel by situations out of our control. With the daily and weekly uptick changes nationwide and Kansas’ own infection figures from the coronavirus, there was no question that this is the right move for IAC, the City of Salina, and you. Kansas’ requiring a 14-day quarantine of visitors from other high-risk states figured heavily into our decision with many of our pilots and volunteers coming from Florida, Arizona, New York, and others affected.
We realize that this decision will be met with frustration but we firmly believe that this is the responsible thing to do. With the support of EAA leadership behind us, we know that this is the right decision and with our members’ continued support, we look forward to 2021 and years of competition and friendship beyond.
Best to all,
Robert Armstrong, President
and your IAC Board of Directors
Happy 4th of July. Bulletin No. 1 for the 2020 US National Aerobatic Championships is now available:
The executive summary:
- Contest starts Saturday, September 19 with a 5 pm all pilot briefing. The contest concludes Thursday evening September 24. See below.
- We have shortened the contest one day compared to 2019.
- COVID 19 considerations are in Annex 1 of the Bulletin. We will monitor the situation and will make the final go-no go date no later than 10 August 2020. The annex offers anticipated guidelines for contest operations.
- Entry fees are fully refundable and the same as 2019. We are providing three on field dinner events this year as part of the entry fee versus only one last year.
- Please register online. Once the go-no go decision is made payment must be made to reserve your practice time slot. First to register is a tie breaker if funds come in simultaneously for practice slots.
- With your entry fee received, we will schedule your practice slot on a first paid, first served basis. We may have daylight for two flights as we have 132 practice slots available on Friday and Saturday. More details are in the Bulletin 1 in section 6.0 on page 10.
- Based on the revised CIVA schedule, we will not have an Unlimited Team selection this year. That will happen in 2021. The Advanced Team selected in 2019 for 2020 will be unchanged for 2021. We will try have a fourth flight for the Advanced team on Thursday if time permits.
- We are working to develop an east hold for the gliders.
- We shifted the box east 200 yards.
- New traffic flows for the contest are in the bulletin including the gliders on the east side of the box. Check them out and provide any feedback to the CD.
- Schedule overview is as follows.
June 16, 2020
Dear Pilots, Volunteers and IAC Supporters:
It would be silly to predict the future, now more than ever. However, I can offer a fact-based summary of where we currently are in regard to the 2020 US National Aerobatic Championships in Salina, KS scheduled for September 20-25. IAC Secretary Lynn Bowes and I met in person and Executive Director Steve Kurtzahn attended by phone with the Salina Airport Authority (SAA) personnel, a Salina Chamber of Commerce representative and tower operations on June 17, 2020.
First and foremost, we will comply with the appropriate Public Health Orders based on Kansas state’s monitoring of testing rates, COVID-19 hospitalizations, ability to contact trace and availability of personal protective equipment (PPE). The current forecast in the Saline County Plans for Reopening(link is external) is an allowance for public gatherings by September with no size restrictions. SAA indicated that there are two large events scheduled in July and August at the airport. Organizers for those events are monitoring the on-going situation leading up to their events. If these events do take place, the IAC will consult with the SAA on “lessons learned” from those events. Our own “IAC contest guidance” in September will be a step up from what is required by the county’s plan. Who would have thought registrations fees would include a mask, but they will!
The Nationals organizers continue with planning and will be ready when and if conditions allow. We have shifted the aerobatic box east ~200 yards to improve judge’s viewing, radio communications, and create a better center box marker on green grass versus the runway. We have secured hangar 606 again this year and hangar 703 is available for gliders and overflow/transients. The aerobatic box waivers are in process at the Wichita FSDO. Planning continues on track with regards to programs, t-shirts, trophies, other collateral, hotels and food.
A decision on holding Nationals will be no later than August 10. This time frame gives us a month to get everything on site and have a better idea of the level of participation. I have emailed all of the 2019 Nationals pilots to gauge their intentions and help answer questions and concerns.
To help people make a more informed decision, clear guidance will be published on how we intend to run Nationals. The concept is to make sure all issues are considered and develop an executable plan within rational operating constraints. We want people to be comfortable and know the “lay of the land” before they decide to attend. For example, items that we are considering and are in the planning stages:
· Use of masks
· Briefings to be held in the hangar or just outside the hangar (weather dependent). We plan to have an LCD wall and good audio for the hangar to help make this go smoothly.
· We will post orders of flights and results electronically on the large LCD and use the website to avoid congregating around 8 ½” x 11” pieces of paper taped to walls.
· Clear north and south starting lines will be established on the ramps.
· We will be respectful of the judge’s line arrangement, in regards to social distancing and/or PPE, with the assistants, recorders, and runners.
· Transportation to and from the judge’s line to take place in smaller groups versus a crowded van.
· There is a lot of space in Hangar 606 and plenty of tables so we can spread out for food events in the hangar more easily than we could crowd into a restaurant or other offsite venue.
· “Private workspaces” for the volunteers will be created upstairs to help them with social distancing.
· Hand sanitizer and disposable gloves will be readily available.
I am confident, as reopening guidelines continue to unfold, that the right decision will be straightforward and one that a majority of the IAC family can support. Safety for our IAC members is always our number one priority. We might not have as large a turn out as planned, and this may cause us to adjust the schedule, shaving a day off and sending you home on Friday versus Saturday. Below is the tentative schedule:
Version 1.0 of the bulletin will come out July 4, 2020. I personally am looking forward to seeing all of you in Salina in September at a safe and fun 2020 US Nationals!
Thank you. Be Safe,
May 8, 2020 - U.S. National Aerobatic Championships Update
At the IAC board of directors spring board meeting held April 25 by teleconference, contest director, Duncan Koerbel submitted an update on the status of planning for the U.S. Nationals scheduled for September 20-25. Preparations are well under way. Hangar 606 will be are home base again this year, jury chairman and chief judges have been selected and the core group of volunteers have signed up to help yet again! Thank you all for volunteering!
There is a plan in place with decision dates for committing funds and ordering event materials etcetera. Duncan indicated there is not a rush to make a final decision about the U.S. Nationals. Bulletin No. 1 will be published July 4, 2020! We are all excited to get regional contests going first! Duncan and the IAC leadership will continue monitoring regional events as well as the Kansas and Salina guidelines for COVID-19 restrictions. The Go / No Go decision and any other major event modifications will be made sometime within the first ten days of August. Further updates will come through IAC official publications and the IAC website.
March 3, 2020
November 6-7, 2019
At the IAC's Fall Board Meeting, Duncan Koerbel IAC #437649 was approved by the Board of Directors, as the Contest Director for the 2020 U.S. Nationals to be held in Salina, Kansas, 20-25 September 2020. Duncan served as the assistant contest director at the 2019 Nationals and was recommended highly by Ron Schreck board member and 2019 Nationals contest director.
Duncan is a member of IAC Chapter 12 in Colorado. He is an Advanced competitor in his Extra 300L. Duncan was the contest director for the 2019 Las Vegas IAC West Open Championship in Jean, Nevada. The site was chosen as a test run for the 2022 World Aerobatic Advanced Championships in which he will also act as contest director. Duncan has also served as contest director for the High Planes Hotpoxia Fest, and the Ben Lowell Aerial Confrontation. He brings a wealth of contest experience with him to the nationals CD position.
Enjoy this recap of all the spectacular fun from the 2019 U.S. National Aerobatic Championships in Salina!