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2023 to Mark Final Year for National Championship Air Races at Reno-Stead Airport

Reno, NV (March 9, 2023) – The Reno Tahoe Airport Authority (RTAA) and the Reno Air Racing Association (RARA) announced that this year will be the final year that the Reno-Stead Airport will host the National Championship Air Races. RARA’s final event at Reno-Stead Airport is set to take place on September 13-17, 2023. It will feature the seven classes of air racing plus extraordinary military and civilian demonstrations that fans have come to love for nearly 60 years.

“We want to celebrate six decades of partnership, competition, and airmanship, which has brought our local community and aviation enthusiasts from all over the world together in this one-of-a-kind celebration of innovation and history,” said Daren Griffin, President and CEO of RTAA. “While it’s a bittersweet moment for our community and the RTAA, we are committed to working with RARA to ensure this year’s event is a tremendous success as we close this historic chapter for the event in northern Nevada.”

The National Championship Air Races has called northern Nevada home since its founding in 1964. However, RTAA’s concerns around challenging economic conditions, rapid area development, public safety, and the impact on the Reno-Stead Airport and its surrounding areas are some of the contributing factors in making the decision to make this the final year of the National Championship Air Races in Reno.

“The National Championship Air Races have become synonymous with Reno, and while we are disappointed that this will mark our final year at the Reno-Stead Airport, we are proud that the past ten Air Race events have attracted more than one million spectators, generated more than $750 million for the local economy and contributed significant aviation-related education and outreach to schools and non-profits all around the area,” said Fred Telling, chairman and CEO of the Reno Air Racing Association. “We are thankful to the RTAA for the opportunity to celebrate and share this event’s storied history with the community and their commitment to work with us to make this year’s event one of the best. We are in discussions with other venues to explore our options to continue the National Championship Air Races well into the future. We hope to see all of our dedicated fans and many new and familiar faces at the event later this year.”

The 2023 event is set to return with more than 150 planes and pilots as well as several ‘hands-on’ displays and experiences, including the GRADD-NVBAA STEM Education Discovery Zone, heritage displays, military demonstrations, static displays, and more. The event will also mark the third year of competition for the STOL (Short Take-Off and Landing) Drag which has become a phenomenon both in the skies and on social media. Ticket sales are open to renewals and will open to the general public on March 22, 2023. To learn more about the event’s final year or purchase tickets, visit airrace.org.

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