Watch Skip Stewart of Skip Stewart Airshows do an extreme knife edge pass within an arms length from a Lamborghini Gallardo in his trademark highly modified 1979 Pitts S-2S Prometheus muscle biplane.
While Skip's biplane might have started life as a standard Pitts aerobatic aircraft, the only remaining stock component is the horizontal stabilizer. Customizations to the wings, tail, cowling, engine, propeller, landing gear, instrument panels, fuel tanks and even seat belts were required to achieve the ultimate aerobatic performance. The stock 260 hp engine was upped to 400 ponies and the aircraft can withstand 12 positive Gs which is twice the limit of the stock variant.
Skip is known for a high energy routine and low and slow knife edge passes. Sometimes these knife edge passes are paired with a high performance car or stunt biker who will grab the wingtip as the plane quickly passes down the runway. Not exciting enough, Skip takes it one step further by having taking a classic motorcycle jump but simultaneously flying underneath.
Partnering with fellow stunt pilot Melissa Pemberton from the US Aerobatic team in her Edge 540, a knife-edge, head-on pass just feet above the ground, is backdropped by a perfectly timed wall of fire. The heat and roar of the explosion drowns out the screaming concert of propellers and spectators are both literally and figuratively blown away.
The 2015 airshow season is underway starting in Central America and Skip Stewart Airshows will be making their way across the country this summer. Check their Facebook for schedules and updates to find a performance near you.
Photos: Justin Connaher (Flickr / CC Commercial License)