WMU female pilots compete in Air Race

Posted at 4:45 AM, Jun 22, 2015
and last updated 2015-06-22 04:45:31-04

KALAMAZOO, Mich.– Two Western Michigan University women aviators will join more than 50 other teams of women pilots for a cross country race that will travel through Kalamazoo. The 2015 Air Race Classic runs June 22-25.

The two locals are Sara Karsten and Katherine Vena. This will be Karsten’s second race and Vena’s first.

The course begins in Fredericksburg, Virginia, and finishes in Fairhope, Alabama. The race is more than 2,100 nautical miles and will challenge pilots to race against their own best speed in the airplane of their choice.

Along the zigzag route, racers will stop or do fly-bys at checkpoints in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, and Tennessee. The 10 stops on this year’s race include two in Michigan: the Three Rivers Municipal Dr. Haines Airport and the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport.

The WMU team predicts most of the race’s 53 competitive teams will make it through the Michigan checkpoints on Tuesday, June 23.

The renowned women’s aviation event dates back to the days of Amelia Earhart and each year features women pilots from across the nation flying fixed wing aircraft using visual flight rules.

You can keep up with the local pilots a variety of ways, through Facebook,or Twitter, or this tracking site.

WMU’s team is positioned at number 50.