Two pilots were killed over the weekend in a collision during an air racing event in Reno in Nevada.
The two aircraft collided at the end of the T-6 Gold race on Sunday on the final day of the National Championship Air Races at Reno-Stead Airport.
“Around 2:15 p.m. this afternoon (Sunday), at the conclusion of the T-6 Gold race, upon landing, two planes collided and it has been confirmed that both pilots are deceased,” the Reno Air Racing Association said in a statement posted on Facebook.
Authorities have identified the 2 pilots as Chris Rushing of Thousand Oaks and Nick Macy of Tulelake.
A report by news agency AP quoted Reno Air Racing Association CEO Fred Telling as saying: “It wasn’t a racing accident. It was indeed a post-race landing accident.”
“We all are curious of how this came to pass,” added Telling.
“Both expertly skilled pilots and Gold winners in the T-6 Class, Macy piloted Six-Cat and Rushing flew Baron’s Revenge,” the Reno Air Racing Association said. “Families of both pilots have been notified and support services are onsite as they deal with this tragedy.”
The two aircraft were North American T-6G and North American AT-6B.
According to the AP report, Telling described Rushing and Macy as skilled and expert pilots who had just finished in the top two spots in the T-6 Gold race.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), the Federal Aviation Administration is carrying out an investigation to find the cause of the crash.
According to a report by The Orange County Register, Rushing was the defending champion in the T-6 Gold race and he was dedicated to promoting the history of the World War II-era AT-6 Texan trainer plane.
“The wreckage of each plane came to rest one-half mile from each other,” NTSB said.
The wreckage would be taken to an off-site facility for analysis.
(With inputs from agencies)