After decades of pioneering the sport of soaring, Tom Knauff is still breaking new ground. Knauff, a member of the Soaring Hall of Fame, set a U.S. multiplace motorglider record for out-and-return speed over a goal-and-return course of more than 500 km on May 10. The record must be verified by the Soaring Society of America and the National Aeronautic Association.
Knauff flew his Schempp-Hirth Duo Discus T high-performance sailplane 423.042 miles at an average speed of 97.56 mph with copilot Jack Goritski. The flight began and ended at Ridge Soaring Gliderport in Julian, Pa., with a pre-declared turnpoint near Mountain Grove, W.V.; it also qualifies for a distance record in a new category that allows up to three turnpoints.
Knauff, who still holds multiple soaring records, owns a gliderport and catalog business with his wife, fellow Hall-of-famer Doris Grove.