Unknown... You Decide... I've looked into this rumor and here's the facts...
1- All aircraft
were required to stay above 500ft agl, this is a standard FAA requirement
for sparsely populated areas and all pilots had been advised by SCORE
officials to fly no lower than 500ft AGL or risk that team being disqualified...
2- Alan Pflueger
has his second flat between the main pit and pit "B" and discovers
his air jack isn't working and then after driving on the flat for several
miles Alan comes upon Wayne Lugo who offers to loan him his jack to change
3- I'm working
at the main pit and here that Troy Herbst is having a problem with the
tranny and will be stopping at pit "C" to change transmissions...
I contact other team members to advise of problems with both Herbst entries...
a phone call from photog advising he observed Pflueger helo coming from
vicinity of Jean airport crossing the course towards pit "C"
and was going to investigate...
advises another group of photogs what he observed and they advise they
are in the area and see helo circling to land...
6- Two Photographers
arrive at landing area near pit "C" and start shooting photos
just as helo lands, and Pflueger Racings crew members appear upset and
waves photogs off, as to imply no photos...
with John Hoffman @ Pflueger Racing and was told the following...
Quote: "Alan had a flat and then discovered the air jack was broken,
we were luck to have Wayne Lugo loan Alan the use of his jack so he could
change the tire prior to pit "B"..."
"Alan choose not to stop at pit "B" because the race was
so close, at this point in time he opted to race on to pit "C"
where he made his pit stop"...
In speaking with Paul, an official from SCORE, I was advised that it is
possible the land a helo during the race so long as it's at least 1/4
mile away from track and it's not providing air support, such as the movement
of crew members, parts or equipment from one place to another...
facts involving this incident, it seems very suspect and possible some
type of air support may of occurred, given the flight path of Pflueger's
helo from the direction of the main pit and the timing of Alan's decision
to skip a scheduled stop at pit "B" (where a helo can't land)
only to stop @ pit "C" shortly after the landing of the helo
I have some concerns... Since air jacks aren't a common pit truck item,
did the helo return to the main pit to retrieve an air jack for Alan while
he had the second flat... Remember he had two flats? Think about it, how
did they manage to get a replacement air jack into the truck, because
I seriously doubt they ran the remainder of the race without an air jack?
[Click here to view Helo Landing @ Chase Truck]