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Thu, Jun 14, 2018

Greg Shelton To Receive 2018 Bill Barber Award For Showmanship

Will Be Presented At AirVenture On July 24

Greg Shelton is the 2018 recipient of the World Airshow News Bill Barber Award for Showmanship. One of the most prestigious awards in the airshow industry, the list of Barber honorees reads like an airshow hall of fame.

Like many in the airshow business, Shelton’s interest in aviation started as a child. His father flew fighters in the U.S. Navy and Greg grew up watching fire bombers operate in northern California. He started flying lessons in 1982 using a Piper J-3 Cub, but before he could finish his license, Shelton traded in the Cub for a Starduster Too in order to fly aerobatics. Less than a year later, he bought a T-6 Texan project, spent four and a half years restoring it to flying condition, and then started flying airshows in the T-6 in 1990. Over the ensuing years, Shelton also performed in a Yak-52 and a Yak-55M.

In 2003, Shelton sold his Yak and bought a 450 horsepower Stearman so he could start a wing-walking act, the act that has been the centerpiece of his airshow offering for almost 15 years. Greg also flies a solo aerobatic routine in the Stearman.

Today, Greg and wing-walker Ashley Shelton offer a unique night wing-walking performance in addition to their traditional daytime show. For the night show, Ashley wears a special lighted costume that allows her to be seen atop Greg’s wing as she waves to the crowd during their fully-aerobatic night airshow.

In December 2006, Shelton sold his T-6 and purchased a rare FM-2 Wildcat in which he also flies a fully-aerobatic airshow routine. Wildcats were the primary Navy and Marine Corps fighter at the start of World War II and fought in all major battles including Wake Island, Battle of Coral Sea, Midway, and Guadalcanal.

The Bill Barber Award for Showmanship began in 1986 and is awarded to airshow performers or teams that have demonstrated great skill and showmanship. World Airshow News magazine and the friends and family of the late Bill Barber present the award annually.

The Bill Barber Award for Showmanship will be presented on Tuesday evening, July 24 during EAA AirVenture at EAA’s Theater in the Woods.

(Image provided with World Airshow News news release. Greg Shelton has offered his signature daytime wing-walking act for almost 15 years [photo by Jim Froneberger])

FMI: www.airshowmag.com

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