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Painting The Sky Red: Stunt Pilot Sean D. Tucker Breaks The Laws Of Gravity

Aerobats are a big draw at the EAA AirVenture fly-in, and Tucker draws more people than most.

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Sean D. Tucker may not be a household name, but within the aviation community he could well be Michael Jackson doing the moonwalk with his red airplane.

Tucker is a member of the Living Legends of Flight, an elite group of aviators and astronauts that includes Jimmy Doolittle, “Chuck” Yeager, and John Glenn.

On Tuesday he performed in Oshkosh a stunning 11-minute routine that would send Albert Einstein back to his desk to re-check his gravity equations.

Barnstormers and aerobats are a big draw at the EAA AirVenture fly-in here and Tucker draws more people than most. According to Tucker’s website, more than half of his maneuvers have never been duplicated by another aerobatic pilot. Several times during Tuesday’s performance he seemed to be suspended in the air, before flying his biplane backwards at more than 100 mph.


Tucker is also the only pilot to perform the triple ribbon cut. During this maneuver, he slices through the ribbons, which are just 25 feet off the ground, at 220 mph in right knife-edge for the first ribbon, then left knife-edge, and finally inverted.

Tucker flies a fire engine-red Challenger III biplane that can reportedly produce 400 horsepower but weighs just 1,200 pounds.

Photographer Adam Senatori captured some of the best moments from Tucker’s flight. Take a look.


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