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It’s been five years. Brad Fitzler and Rob Mitchell, pilots with the NOAA Corps, rejoin Oddball Pilot to catch up about their careers, flying with NOAA, and what it’s like to fly into a hurricane … on purpose.

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What happens in Reno rarely stays in Reno! Bryan and Marty swap stories and tips from the recent Reno Championship Air Races, and from years gone by at the fastest motor sport in the world.

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In part 2 of our conversation with Jim “JD” Dale, we hear more about his 30-year career flying, restoring, and maintaining warbirds. But wait … there’s more here than just warbirds! JD tells us how working with older civilian airplanes can be just as interesting (and beneficial) to oddball pilots.

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With the holidays fast-approaching, we thought you’d appreciate seeing the oddball pilot’s contribution to the Christmas tree industry. Regardless of your personal holiday preferences, you have to admire the skill these Oregon helicopter pilots demonstrate.

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“Wanted: Pilot/Mechanic to restore and fly warbirds.” You just don’t see that in the want-ads. But can anyone be successful in a long-term career with warbirds? Yes, they can. Meet Jim Dale, and hear about his 30-year career flying, restoring, and maintaining warbirds.

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“Air Mail Pilot.” It’s not a title we see any longer. But it once described aviators with a single mission … to fly the mail. They were oddball pilots indeed. Looking back and hearing from those who actually did it might help give us some perspective about new ways on the horizon for flying the mail.

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What happens when a C-130’s #3 propeller gearbox explodes at flight level 270? It ain’t pretty. Listen to the cockpit voice recording of the incident, and hear Evan Smith–who was in the left seat on that day in 1988–tell the tale.

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BBC reporter Poonam Taneja tried to forget about aviation when her father was killed in a crash while delivering a plane from Scotland to Canada in 1999. 17 years later she wanted to learn more about what he did, and understand his passion for it. The result is a thoughtful short documentary that recently aired on BBC Radio 4.

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“Professional Air Race Pilot” is a rather unique job title. Thom Richard always knew he wanted it. In this conversation, you’ll hear how he worked his way up through flying and wrenching to eventually racing (and winning) at the Reno Air Races and the Air Race One World Cup.

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Bryan and Aidan check in with their thoughts on the aviation job market, talk with Marty about aerial firefighting jobs, and hear about Marty’s time at AirVenture Oshkosh this past summer.

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