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2008 Air Race Classic 'flight log'

June 21, 2008

by Meghan Burlager and Betsy Taylor

BOZEMAN, Mont.--Good news! It's Day Three, and we still like each other! We hope it lasts.

We ran a few errands this morning and headed out to the airport. The GPS works in our car, just not in the plane, so we ended up not getting lost.

Last week, they warned us that it had snowed here, but they made fools out of us. It was in the mid 80s with little wind, and what wind there was, it was hot.

We spent the afternoon cleaning the inside and outside of our 22WU [plane] and forgot to apply sunscreen. Bad mistake. We are leaving soon to pick up aloe. We had our inspections of the plane and ourselves, and everything went fine.

The fellow figuring out the rating on our engine was impressed that we knew the specifics of what was said on the sticker. He thought that we were maybe trying to pull the wool over his eyes by sneaking in a higher HP engine, but we explained that it was Cirrus' practice to "dumb down" the engine so it doesn't compete with the SR-22. Thanks to maintenance for telling us this so we looked smart--and so did Western!

There was a "meet the racers" pig roast at the airport, where each team was briefly introduced. The mayor (lady of course) of Bozeman was in attendance and was glad to see us all. I'm sure that we boosted up their economy over the long weekend. We were able to sit and chat with so many great and fascinating lady pilots from around the country, and specifically from the Pennsylvania area.

There was a group of 10 or so that were heavily involved in the 99s and were recruiting us. Betsy asked if there was even a race, or if this was some huge scam for 99 membership recruitment, kind of like those time shares in Florida.

We scouted out our collegiate competition today. This year it is only Purdue and Embry-Riddle, so we'll promise at least third place for you guys! They seemed nice, but we are way cooler. I hope that adds points to our score in the end. We could pick up a few tips on being cool from the older ladies involved in the race; we'd say that 95 percent of them are sarcastic, fun-loving, adventurous rebels and because of that have won our hearts.

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Media contact: Cheryl Roland, (269) 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

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