Features

August 2000 Issue

Warbirds of Attrition

Warbirds are full of panache, sex appeal and promise, but they also show that they donít make widows only in combat

When it comes to capturing the imagination of old and young, sport fliers and professionals, nothing can beat the appeal of warbirds. Antique biplanes and World War II fighters have been popular for years, and recently the availability of former Eastern Bloc jet fighter trainers has expanded the appeal of very hot airplanes among those who have ridden the stock market (among other things) to riches.

But just as itís said that a fool and his money are soon flying more airplane than he can handle, the accident record for warbirds paints a very discouraging picture. Valuable and irreplaceable aircraft, including P-51 Mustangs, hit the ground for reasons that can only be described as irration...

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