Granger Whitelaw: A look back at the Rocket Racing League’s First Flights
An article about the Rocket Racing League’s first test flights that appeared on the Aero-News Network.
It Flies, Too! RRL Conducts Inaugural Tests Of Armadillo-Powered Racer New Entertainment Sports League To Fly With New Rocket Engine Provider The Rocket Racing League announced Wednesday the successful results of the first three test flights of the Bridenstine DKNY Rocket Racer now equipped with liquid oxygen (LOX)-alcohol engines manufactured by Armadillo Aerospace, a leading developer of reusable rocket powered vehicles based in Mesquite, TX. The test flights mark a new milestone for the League, occurring one month after the first public demonstration flights of the Rocket Racer at the 2008 EAA Oshkosh AirVenture. That racer was powered by a pump-fed, liquid oxygen and kerosene fueled powerplant developed by XCOR Aerospace… whereas the Armadillo engine is pressure-fed, and uses alcohol and LOX as propellants.
The Rocket Racer test flights with the Armadillo rocket engine were conducted at the Clinton Sherman Industrial Airpark in Burns Flat, OK on August 25 and 26, and were piloted by Rocket Racing League test pilot Len Fox. Each of the three test flights averaged about 10 minutes, with a top speed of 190 knots. “Armadillo is an important partner to the Rocket Racing League and we’re thrilled with our initial test flights,” said Rocket Racing League founder and CEO Granger Whitelaw. “We’ve made great strides this year, from announcing the acquisition of Velocity Aircraft, to our DKNY sponsorship, and our first public demonstration flights at AirVenture. Now that we’ve successfully conducted a test flight with the Armadillo engine, we are looking forward to getting to racing and exhibiting a 21st century sport for the 21st century sports fan.”