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Reno Race #1 "Super Corsair" ~ (autographed by John Maloney) ~ 35% Off ~ Free Shipping

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Frame Size: 19" x 24" .... autographed in pencil by: John Maloney

Reno Race #1 "Super Corsair"

“Chino Kid”, Jim Maloney, was the prime mover in the development of the Super Corsair race plane. Near the end of WW II, the Chance Vought Corporation had produced a. a total of 18 new F2G Super Corsair fighters, all powered by the massive Pratt and Whitney 4360 engine, which was, and still is, the largest aircraft piston engine ever built. Unfortunately, problems were encountered in the program and it was cancelled. After the War, a few enterprising individuals purchased some of these aircraft. The intent was to race these brutes at the Cleveland Air Races, which had resumed immediately after the war. Ex Navy fighter pilot, Cook Cleland, brought three Super Corsairs to Cleveland in 1947, and finished as the overall winner in the one he was flying. In 1948, air scoop problems forced him out of the race. Cleland and his F2-G regained the Championship Crown in 1949. However, due to the crash of the highly modified Mustang Beguine, which took the life of pilot Bill Odom, along with that of a mother and her child on the ground, the Cleveland Air Races were permanently cancelled. Fast forward to late 1981 where Jim Maloney, and fellow “Chino Kid”/ex-Red Baron pilot, Steve Hinton, begin toying with the idea of creating a modern version of the Super Corsair for the Unlimited Class. With the aid of Lockheed engineers Pete Law and Bruce Boland, the project is completed in time for the 1982 Reno Air Races.
1982: Obtaining sponsorship from Budweiser, the Chino based F2-G Super Corsair (actually a converted F4U, since no F2-Gs were around for racing) marks its debut with Steve Hinton at the stick. At this time, it is known as the Bud Light Special. Besides the addition of the mighty Pratt and Whitney 4360, other modifications to the aircraft include clipped wings for increased banking in the turns, a modified canopy and sloping turtle deck for reduced drag, a larger cowling and air scoop to house the massive engine, and a reduction to the aircraft’s overall weight. In its first time out, the plane finishes fourth in Sunday’s Gold Race.
1983: No Gold, but the aircraft does win the Unlimited Silver Race.
1984: Renamed Super Corsair, Hinton brings the plane home in third place, in the Championship Race.
1985: Victory for the Super Corsair, as Neil Anderson in Dreadnought cuts a pylon on the last lap of the Gold Final, allowing Steve Hinton, who was right on Anderson’s tail, to be declared the winner.
1986: Steve Hinton is named as the pilot for John Sandberg’s new Unlimited Racer, Tsunami. John Maloney succeeds Hinton as the pilot for the Super Corsair. Problems plague the aircraft and it fails to make the field for the Gold Race.
1987: The Super Corsair places fourth in the Championship Race.
1988: Maloney and the racer garner a sixth place finish in the Gold.
1989: The F2G finishes a respectable third in the Gold Final.
1990: The Super Corsair crosses the finish line fifth in Sunday’s Championship Race.
1991: Another top ten finish in the Gold for the Super Corsair, this time in seventh place.
1992: Taking over for John Maloney, Kevin Eldridge becomes the last of a trio to pilot the Super Corsair, finishing sixth in Sunday’s Gold.
1993: Eldridge places the Super Corsair fifth in the Championship Race.
1994: In March, at the inaugural Phoenix 500 Air Races, the Super Corsair experiences a major problem in Saturday’s preliminary heat. Going into the fourth lap, a plume of white smoke appears from the engine, followed by three separate bursts of flame, the last engulfing the cockpit. Pitching down, then up and to the right, Eldridge bails out of the ill-fated plane, striking the horizontal stabilizer, which crushes two discs in his neck. He also suffers a broken arm and leg as a result of the impact, however, his chute opens and he floats safely to the ground. The Super Corsair then rolls over inverted and plunges vertically into the desert floor, ending its racing career in a ball of fire.

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