As always, we had a fantastic time at EAA! “One week, One Oshkosh” and we made the most of it! A native of Oshkosh, Frank Frassetto was our 2014 Team Chambliss Intern. Frank helped with the Team’s responsibilities, meeting with sponsors, cleaning airplanes, delivering products, and setting up for autograph sessions. Oh, and a few parties too! Frank had a few words of his own…
My name is Frank Frassetto. I was born and raised in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, and am going into my sophomore at the University of Dubuque with a Flight Operations Major. By my 18th birthday I received my private pilot’s license, have accumulated about 100 hours, and now a few hours away from receiving my Instrument Rating.
During EAA AirVenture 2014, I was given the opportunity to work with Kirby Chambliss and his Team. After being a bystander for many years at AirVenture, I was very excited to see a different side of how the convention worked. As the Team traveled back from Poland, where Kirby raced in the Red Bull Air Race, I anxiously awaited their arrival. At a sponsor dinner on Tuesday night, I was introduced to the crew (Kirby, Jason, Danny, and Stan). Trying to get a good nights’ sleep on Tuesday was almost impossible because I kept thinking of all the exciting things that I would be experiencing the rest of the week.
Wednesday started off by helping the Team to get Kirby’s plane ready for him to practice. The rest of the day we had to make sure that the plane was clean and that Kirby was able to get to all of his autograph signings. Making sure that Kirby followed a schedule allowed him to greet as many people as possible. This not only helped Kirby but it also helped his sponsors who held the signings. This brought attention to the sponsor who then made Kirby’s airshow possible.
This schedule continued the rest of the week until the Team departed Oshkosh on Saturday evening. The week that I spent with Team Chambliss exceeded my expectations by a long shot and I could not have asked for a better experience! I would like to thank the entire Chambliss Team for giving me the opportunity to help them this year at AirVenture 2014.
Incredible week of intense competition in Poland! The Team arrived early to install a new engine due to our Team feeling that are current engine had fallen below the 2% parameters. Early in the week, Kirby and Jason flew quit a few hours to break in the new engine. It proved to be a good one and before we knew it, it was time for the practice runs and qualifying…
Kirby had good times in practice and qualifying, enough to qualify 8th with a time of 1:13.25. On Race Day Kirby finished 4th at1:12.91 with Hannes Arch winning the with a blistering time of 1:09.89.
It proved to be an exciting day in Gdynia, Poland for Kirby and his Team! Kirby moved into the Super 8’s with a time of 01:12.31, flying against Matthias who had two penalties, while Kirby incurred only one.
Ivanoff, Bonhomme, Besenyei, and McLeod took penalties in the Super 8, leaving Arch, Lamb, Hall, and Kirby to duke it out in the Final Four! The winning time was 01:09.895 by Hannes Arch with Nigel Lamb close behind. Kirby will head to Ascot in the coming weeks looking to make some improvements. Till next time…
A thrilling day in Gdynia, Poland! Kirby had some great runs in practice and held 2nd place in qualifying until Martin Sonka edged by with a time of 01:12.45. Kirby ended the day 8th with the time to beat coming from Paul Bonhomme, 01:10.98. It was overcast with a few drizzles and completely packed, wall to wall crowds for Quali.
The times are close and the competition incredible! Kirby comments, ” Tomorrow will be tough, I’ll be pushing hard!”
We’re all looking forward to a great Race Day! Stay tuned!
Countdown to Race Day!
Kirby flew through the track on two separate training sessions, trying to find the line that he likes best. Jason spent the evening working out a few small details and we’re ready for Quali. There are a couple of training sessions before qualifying late afternoon. Rain is expected, should make the track very interesting….
The pilots didn’t get to fly on the track yesterday, the wind was up with the waves on the Baltic being too high for the barges that hold the pylons. Kirby managed to fly three times between meetings, a photo shoot and a loose fitting on the fuel tank being adjusted.
The Team is in good spirits, hoping for good track results today with the new engine. So far the pierogis and the Polish beer have been a big hit with all the race teams.
Tomorrow is Qualifying, with Race Day on Sunday, coming up fast! Stay tuned for more….
The day in Gdynia was packed full of interviews, briefings, and meetings. In addition to the full schedule Kirby and Jason flew five hours breaking in the engine. After an oil change, everyone seems to be happy with the new engine. The Team stayed late to fix a trim servo that had failed on the last flight. Jason will tell you, it’s never boring, always something to do!
We are excited to be here in Poland for the first time! The weather has been great, nice and warm, the people are super friendly. Race day is coming up fast! Till next time…
The Team got an early start finishing the assembly of 14KN! Surprise…We decided to do an engine change. There is a provision in the rules that allows an engine to be sent back if you feel it is not making the horsepower that was initially assigned to that engine. We must pay a specific amount to do this, so we are definitely taking a chance on the engine coming within the 2% parameters, however we felt like it was worth it! We have a new engine on and we are ready to rock, hopeful this new engine is a good one with plenty of HP’s
The Team has been working super hard! Wish Kirby lots of luck and some great runs here in Gdynia! The Red Bull Air Race is Sunday the 27th and Qualifying the 26th! Smoke on!
Have you ever wondered what the spades do on Kirby’s airplane? Kirby’s Crew Chief, Jason Resop explains….
Caution: Objects appear farther away than they really are! Kirby Chambliss along with Miles Daisher and Mike Swanson, take to the skies at Hill AFB in Ogden Utah! Photo by GoPro