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Many of the air tankers working the Walker Fire south of Susanville, California are reloading with retardant at the Reno Stead Airport. The situation at the airport is a little different from most air tanker bases, in that earlier this week qualifying was underway for the Reno National Championship Air Races which meant small aircraft were racing around at low levels over the airport while the tanker base was still servicing the incoming and departing air tankers.

“The Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority is proud to continue its long-term relationship with the historic Reno Air Racing Association,” Marily Mora, President/CEO of the Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority, said in a statement. “The races are more than a tradition, they are an iconic aviation event known worldwide.”

The rolling two-year agreement will renew annually. The announcement noted upgrades have been finished and more are planned at the Stead airport. In 2018, runway 8/26 was repaved so the landing surface was improved. The tower has been repainted and the airport authority is repaving and upgrading roads.

“We have a long-standing relationship with RTAA which enables us to put on this one-of-a-kind event here in Reno,” Tony Logoteta, chief operational officer of the Reno Air Racing Association, said in a statement. “The wonderful cultural, economic and educational benefit that the region enjoys as a result of the event would not be possible without this collaboration.”

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