It's that exciting time of the year again. It's not just because of the food you consumed during Thanksgiving, or the presents you'll be getting (if you've been good...) at Christmas. One of Flight Simulation's greatest traditions is coming up. Soon February will be here, and the 2012 Flight Simulator Around the World Race will be upon us.
Now, flightsimmers have another tradition to look forward to during the year. One inspired by the infamous Cannonball Run road races that took place in the 1970s, capturing the outlaw spirit of those races and applying them to aircraft.
And so, I'd like to announce....
The Fourth Annual Holkham Bay for the Holidays Dash
This is an individual event. All pilots who have an interest in participating in the 2012 RTW Race are invited to compete in this event. This race will begin at Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport in Minneapolis, Minnesota (KMSP); and conclude at Flightsim.com Multi-Player Adventures World Headquarters in Holkham Bay, Alaska (PAHB), a distance of 1668 nautical miles. Competitors will run their legs at their convenience anytime between 12:00 AM (Eastern Standard Time) Friday, December 9th, 2011 and 12:00 AM Sunday, January 15th, 2012.
As usual, the RTW Duenna will be our tracking and scoring system. It's avaliable at:
The Holkham Bay scenery is avaliable here at Flightsim.com as "pahb_v1.zip". Glacier Bay scenery and Runway 12 objects are also required for the scenery (and also avaliable here at Flightsim.) Team Flightsim members will receive our usual luxurious accomodations, while there will be plenty of cots on the porch for members of other teams.
All settings used for the RTW (Crash Detection, Weather, Realism, etc.) must be used for this event, except that the FS time settings may be altered so your legs can be flown in daylight. Only the time spent in flight on the Duenna will count towards the competitor's overall time. If a competitor crashes on takeoff or en-route, the leg must be reflown. If the competitor crashes on landing, a 1 hour penalty will be assessed and the competitor may continue from his intended destination airport.
This year, there will be two classes of aircraft run, a normal RTW Race Aircraft class and a Four-Engine Prop class. Pilots may participate in both classes.
All aircraft used for the RTW Race Aircraft Class must meet normal RTW Regulations.
1) Must be Piston Fixed Wing, Two Engine or Less Turboprop Fixed Wing, or a Rotorcraft type.
2) Must have had at least 10 real-world examples produced.
3) Must have realistic performance.
All aircraft in the Four-Engine Prop Class must meet the latter two requirements listed above. This class is intended for classic four (or possibly more) engined airliners and military aircraft. The only requirement is that your plane have at least four engines, and they all be piston-powered. (Turboprops like the Lockheed C-130 or the Tupolev Tu-95 are not legal for this race.) All four-engined props that are legal in the RTW are legal in this race. (Note that the RTW allows an older, faster flight model of the CalClassic DC-7 series to be used. This will also be the case in this race.)
The same aircraft must be used for the entire race from Minneapolis to Holkham Bay.
And of course, you are heavily encouraged to write some reports on your progress and provide screenshots of your adventure.
Those are the rules, in their entirety. There are no other rules. Competitors may fly to Holkham Bay using any route, in as many or as few legs as they wish, at any altitude they desire. Competitors may stop at any and all airports along the way, and fly any amount of distance on a single leg. The Pilot who arrives at Holkham Bay with least amount of time spent in flight from Minneapolis will be declared the winner. The bar at Holkham will be well stocked, and the atmosphere will be festive for the Christmas and New Years Holidays, so make your travel arrangements now!