The 44th annual Air Race Classic (ARC) will not take place this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, event organizers announced on Tuesday. The 2299 NM race was expected to begin in Grand Forks, North Dakota, on June 23 and finish in Terre Haute, Indiana, on June 26. The Air Race Classic has been held every year since World War II except 1974, when it was canceled due to a fuel crisis in the U.S. Last year, 49 teams from 31 states flew in the race.
“One of the cornerstones of the race is the emphasis the organization places on safety; for our racers and spectators and for the hundreds of volunteers who devote numerous hours to help ensure its legacy,” event organizers said in a statement. “The ARC Board of Directors, after long consideration and deliberation, has determined it is in the best interests of the safety and well-being for our racers and volunteers that the 2020 Air Race Classic be canceled.”
The Air Race Classic is a day VFR cross-country air race for women. ARC competition class entrants fly normally aspirated piston airplanes, each of which is assigned a handicap. The route for next year’s race, defined by 9 to 10 airports that teams must fly to, will be announced on June 1. ARC 2021 is scheduled for June 22 – 25.