Air Race Classic 2018

Working to raise $1 a mile to cover race expenses!                   Follow the team on:


We would like to begin by thanking everyone who helped sponsor us in last year’s Air Race Classic. It was an amazing experience that none of us will ever forget! The money donated literally fueled our race, among other things. We bought fuel, hotels, registration, and other necessities on the road. We are thankful for the opportunities provided to us and look forward to this year’s race.

The Air Race Classic is a way for us to strengthen and challenge our flying skills. At UND we are focused on training, and refining our piloting abilities. Flying the race gives us an opportunity not only to use those skills, but learn and build on them in a competitive environment. In previous races we had to navigate the mountains of New Mexico, flying over the desert, around large cities like Minneapolis, while flying as fast, and safe, as possible.

The biggest challenge in the race this year is that the girls have to fly internationally, crossing into Ontario, Canada for the terminus. This will be a brand new experience for all of the teammates. This year the course covers 2,538 miles across 9 states and 1 province. We'll be competing with 49 teams and 109 racers.

Air Race Classic History

Starting in the 1920s, the Air Race Classic (ARC) was one of the only competitions for female pilots. Amelia Earhart, Louise Thaden, and Jackie Cochran are among some of the first women to compete in what was then known as the “Powder Puff Derby.” Overcoming adversity that existed in the industry, these women were pioneers of the craft. Today, the tradition continues in this exciting showcase of airmanship and teamwork. Teams of 2 or 3 pilots will have four days to complete the course stretching over 2,400 miles, flying normally aspirated, piston-powered airplanes. Creating a greater challenge the teams are limited to visual flight conditions and daylight hours only. Because of this challenge, the teams are reliant upon good weather conditions, and a good meteorological forecast. It is a competitive outlet for women pilots and continues to be one of a kind.    

Being a participant in the ARC is a life-changing event. The race provides opportunities for pilots of all skill levels and backgrounds to race against one another in a diverse environment. The team experiences types of flying unavailable in North Dakota.  In the air, every team keeps their strategy to themselves—it’s full throttle racing. On the ground, the atmosphere changes and becomes a welcoming community. Experienced racers share stories and offer advice about more than just flying. The women within the race become lifelong friends and after over 2,400 miles in a small airplane, the team becomes inseparable.

The Air Race Classic is a celebration of the achievements of women pilots through the last century.  Even today, aviation is heavily unbalanced and male dominated. This event allows UND to be part of the change toward an equal industry and inspires the team to do more for women in the field. The team believes that outreach is the most successful way to share how passionate they are about aviation. In the past, the team has given presentations on the Air Race Classic event to Girl Scout Troops in conjunction with the UND Women in Aviation Chapter. The team plans to continue sharing our passion at these events and more—inspiring girls and women to dream, do, and become anything.

About the students

Monique McAnnally is from Valencia, California and completed her private pilot training out of Whiteman Airport(KWHP)! Since then, she has earned her Instrument and commercial license with a multi engine rating at UND! She has almost completed her CFI rating, and will be graduating in December!! During her senior year she has been super involved in student organizations. She was Vice President of Alpha Eta Rho as well as the Aviation Exploring Coordinator for the Aviation Outreach Program! Monique was the Navigator for team last year and is really looking forward to being the pilot this year, while racing along side her amazing teammates!

Sierra is from Kaneohe, Hawaii and is a senior at UND. She is a commercial pilot with instrument & multi engine ratings and is currently working on finishing her CFI! This is her first Air Race Classic and she is most excited to fly across the country and see new places with her awesome teammates!

Emily is from St Paul, MN and recently graduated from UND. She currently works as a flight instructor for UND and is working on finishing up her MEI. She is very excited to be able to fly in the race this year after watching last summer! She’s most excited to fly into Canada and experience new things with her teammates along side of her!

Carly Shukiar is a freshman and commercial aviation major originally from Thousand Oaks, CA. She got her private pilot’s certificate in California before coming to UND. Aside from serving as the ground coordinator for the Air Race Classic Team, Carly is also a UND Aerospace Tour Guide and Student Services Representative. She’s also a member of the Ventura County Ninety Nines and Women in Aviation. Aside from aviation-related activities, Carly is a dancer and was in theatre and choir throughout middle and high school. Carly can’t wait to cheer her teammates on as they fly the race this year, and looks forward to exploring Canada with them at the race’s terminus!