Blackwood Gazette #189- Marcy Quail Destroys Competition in Rommsbach

By Huxley Pruitt, Sports

15/9- Marcy Quail may be on the verge of a winning streak in the Pandion Racing League, as she took the top spot in the Horizon division for the second race in a row. Not only did she win, she completely destroyed the competition.

The colonial born pilot once again found herself going head to head with Perys Kerby during the weekend’s last race. The two pilots stayed neck and neck for the first half of the race, until Quail blew past him at the turn around.

“I miscalculated the wind direction and over corrected,” Kerby said, taking full responsibility for his defeat. “It was a dumb mistake. Not to take away from Miss Quail’s victory. That was a difficult course, and a lesser pilot would have balked at some of the stunts I pulled to out-maneuver her.”

Despite Kerby’s admission that his defeat was a result of his own oversight, many other Horizon racers continue to accuse Quail of cheating. Some have even suggested that she and Kerby are romantically involved, and that Kerby took a dive.

“That’s a load and a half,” Quail said when asked about the accusations. “Kerby and me don’t even like each other. In fact we can’t stand each other, out of the cockpit. Loud mouthed braggarts, the both of us. But he’s honest…he’s a good racer, and he knows the only way he’s gonna beat me down the line is if he’s truthful about why he lost in the first place and fixes it. If the others would do the same thing, perhaps they’d have a chance against the Green Chopper.”

The Green Chopper refers to Quail’s aircraft, a souped-up first generation crop duster.

The victory puts Quail in the position of the being the first Horizon racer to face a Legacy racer at the Oeil de Fleur race in two weeks. The event will be the first where the two divisions will finally go head to head.

Blackwood Gazette #189- Marcy Quail Destroys Competition in Rommsbach

Blackwood Gazette # 180- Accusations and Rivalries Flair During Walsh Race II

By Huxley Pruitt, Sports

24/8- Blood ran hot amongst the participants of the Pandion Racing League this week, as the second half of the inaugural season began with the Walsh Race II. A number of upsets and several near misses led to accusations of carelessness and cheating.

The first mishap happened before the first race even began, when Legacy League racer Aaron Deuboe, who many have taken to calling the Disappointment of Saderale due to his abysmal performance over the course of the season, reportedly cut across opponent Hardisty Pender’s flight path during takeoff. Many have questioned why a lower tier racer like Deuboe was doing racing against a top tier racer like Pender to begin with.

“It was a challenge, made by Deuboe to Pender, after Pender made light of Deuboe’s three legged dog, Locksley,” said Mathis Galland. “I approved the race, thinking a gentleman’s duel would help spice up the Legacy League’s showing after continuing criticism over the League’s rather ‘professional’ racing style. In other words, people find Legacy boring.”

This revelation has led some to question the validity of the league. Is Pandion Racing concerned with providing a legitimate test of aviation skills, or is it more concerned with putting on a show?

“Why not both?” was Galland’s only reply to that question.

The drama continued with the Horizon league the next day, as Marcy Quail took the top spot this week, knocking down Perys Kerby to second. While Kerby was cordial in abdicating his spot to Quail, the Lakenheath Twins, whom Quail defeated at Waystation Bravo, very loudly accused the colonial woman of sabotage. The accusation was then backed up by Gideon Hotoft and Jedidiah Seabury, both racers who have lost to Quail.

Hotoft, Seabury, and the Lakenheaths’ planes all showed signs of tampering. It was believed that the league’s officials would suspend Quail’s victory pending an investigation, until Kerby showed that his plane had not been tampered with in any way. Kerby suggested a conspiracy might be afoot amongst the Horizon racers to oust the lone female racer. With no evidence of either possibility, however, the officials simply issued a warning that any mechanical malfeasance would be met with expulsion from the league, and a fine of up to 5,000 gold.

The next Pandion race will be held on a new course along the coast of Rommsbach. As usual, tickets have already sold out.

Blackwood Gazette # 180- Accusations and Rivalries Flair During Walsh Race II

Blackwood Gazette #170- Racing Fever Overshadows Fear as Thousands Flock to Waystation Bravo for Pandion Event

By Huxley Pruitt, Sports

3/8- Many people voiced concern over the fledgling Pandion Racing League’s decision to stage its latest event on the newly relaunched Waystation Bravo, given its grim history over the last year. Even more expressed the idea that the government sponsored event was no more than a ploy to get people onto the station to see that everything is running smoothly.

Despite all of this, the event’s turnout proved to be the League’s best yet. This of course brought out concerns that the station was over capacity, with many over nighters forced to either bunk on ships or camp in common areas. The station suffered no failures over the weekend and it seems that the event’s secondary objective, to sway public perception of the station, has succeeded as well.

“This isn’t so bad,” one attendee, standing in line at a job recruitment booth said. “The place is pretty clean, you can still smell the paint, and I haven’t seen a single trace of ghosts nor heard any whispers in the dark since I got here an hour ago. Figure I might as well apply since I lost my job at Klankenvroot last year.”

As for the races themselves, opinions weren’t as warm as they have been in the past. Many cite the fact that the open air of the barrier ocean wasn’t nearly exciting as the wild twists and turns of the Serpent’s Tongue canyon event two weeks ago. Nevertheless, the races brought some stunning upsets, the most notable of which was Horizon League racer Marcy Quail’s victory over both Lakenheath twins in subsequent head to head events, knocking them off the winner’s podium and taking second place overall, after Perys Kerby, reclaiming first place after his defeat at Serpent’s Tongue.

The Legacy League saw no such upsets, with the winner’s podium remaining static over last week. Gargary Dobbs remained in the top slot, followed by “Bonzo” Doosly in second and Hardisty Pender in third.

The next event will return to Walsh once again, where Mathis Galland promises a course reworked to take into consideration feedback from fans and racers alike, as well as data collected during the Serpent’s Tongue race.

“My course designers are committed to delivering a wide range of ever changing events and course layouts,” Galland said. “Things will only get more exciting and complex with time, so stay tuned!”

Blackwood Gazette #170- Racing Fever Overshadows Fear as Thousands Flock to Waystation Bravo for Pandion Event

Blackwood Gazette #161- Legacy Racing League Brings the Heat to Serpent’s Tongue Canyon

By Huxley Pruitt, Sports

20/7– The reigning narrative coming out of the inaugural event of Pandion’s Racing League two weeks ago was that while the spectacle of the races won over legions of fans (attendance doubled this week, we are told, despite a more remote location) and more than delivered on its promise of high stakes action in the skies, it was the amateur racers in the Horizon League that brought most fans to their feet.

If there were any doubts about the Legacy League’s ability to deliver the edge of your seat thrills that the Horizon league brought, those doubts were all but dispelled by this week’s event in the Serpent’s Tongue Canyon.

Tobias Cuthbertson, who took the top podium in Walsh and was a top contender for this event as well, dropped a staggering six places, being displaced by Gargery Dobbs. It is Dobbs’ who is credited with provided the additional spark that many felt the Legacy League was missing in Walsh. The young pilot from Willanna pushed his aircraft to the limit, knifing through narrow passages that other pilots avoided in an effort to keep ahead of the competition. This in turn pushed the other members of the league to step up and take risks they may not have otherwise, providing an all-around much more entertaining event.

As for the Horizon League, they were once again the large draw, with attendance swelling a further quarter over the Walsh event. This week brought the exhibition-only stunt race of last week as the main event, where both speed and maneuverability came into play as the hot shot amateurs used the canyon’s unique geography to their advantage. In this area, no one out flew the notorious Lakenheath Twins, Bud and Bruce, who ended up going head to head with each other in the final event and taking first and second place, respectively.

Anticipation for the next event was already at a fever pitch, but the announcement of the venue has already sent fans rushing to ticket sellers. The next round of racing will be hosted on the notorious Waystation Bravo.

Blackwood Gazette #161- Legacy Racing League Brings the Heat to Serpent’s Tongue Canyon

Blackwood Gazette #151- Pandion Air Racing League Opens with Outstanding Numbers

By Huxley Pruitt, Sports

6/7- The first annual Pandion Aerodynamics Racing Circuit got underway this weekend in Walsh, drawing thousands of citizens from around the Triumvirate for some high flying racing action. For two days the best pilots in the empire showed those of us with our feet trapped firmly on the ground what a plane can do, and then pushed those planes just a little bit more.

The Legacy League provided fast action out of the gate, with a head to head race between Tobias Cuthbertson, former Captain of the Crowndon Air Corps, and “Bonzo” Doosly, retired pilot for Nor Easter. They were neck and neck for most of race, cutting close corners around the course’s obstacles. The turnaround occurred around the last turn, when Doosly clipped Cuthbertson, sending both air craft careening. The crowd watched in silence as Cuthbertson brought his craft under control and pulled ahead, winning the race with a two second spread and earning cheers from the mostly Crowndonian crowd. Cuthbertson would go on to dominate the weekend for the Legacy League, beating Walsh’s own Parker Behan and Toring’s Hardisty Pender for the top of the winner’s podium.

The second day of racing focused on the Horizon League, and if you asked anyone in the crowd, this league, made up mostly of amateur and trade pilots, is the reason they came out. Promising head-spinning stunts and a true sense of derring-do, the Horizon League did not disappoint.

The-Middle-of-Nowhere’s Gideon Hotoft shut down des Anges’ Micah Le Fleur in a stomach churning stunt race to open the event. This exhibition was followed by a heavily modified version of the head to head course the Legacy League raced the day before, featuring more obstacles and tighter turns. Hotoft once again put on a good show, but ultimately came in third on the podium. The first place pot ultimately went to Rommsbach’s Perys Kerby, while second place went to the controversial woman pilot, Marcy Quail.

After the races were over, we spoke to Mathis Galland, owner of Pandion and the creator of the races, about how he felt the event fared.

“I think it’s safe to say it was a rousing success!” he told us. “The crowds were going wild at every close call and photo finish, and we’re already getting requests from sponsors who want to enter their own racers for a second season.”

Tickets for the next event, two weeks from now in Des Anges, have already sold out.

Blackwood Gazette #151- Pandion Air Racing League Opens with Outstanding Numbers

Blackwood Gazette #115-Track Construction Begins for Air Races, Despite Setbacks

By Huxley Pruitt, Sports

7/5-It seems that even the loss of several key members of his proposed air racing league cannot keep Mathis Galland down. Construction on the first course broke ground in the countryside outside of Walsh early this week.

“Many people are calling me crazy,” Galland said. “When Blunderberger [sic] and the others left, they took their sponsors with them. It also cost me a few investors. Luckily, I’m richer than sin and was able to cut costs a little bit by building on my own land.”

Rumors of an anonymous benefactor began swirling shortly after those investors mentioned above stepped away. Galland confirmed it.

“I did indeed receive a sizable donations from a third party. It’s not my place to name names. Just know that it’s all completely legal. The donor just wanted to do me a favor. If he wishes to step forward, he will.”

The Walsh course is said to be a straight forward race course, but Galland promises future courses will be much more complex.

“After we finish in Walsh, we’ll begin construction on a course outside of Des Anges in Nor Easter,” Galland said. “That one will make use of the natural environment for much of its length, with a portion weaving through the rocky spires of the Serpent’s Tongue canyon. After that we’ll build three more for this season, in locations that are tenuous at the moment. But the final course, oh, it’s a doozy, let me assure you. People will lose their minds when it’s announced at the end of the season.”

Preliminary races will be held at the beginning of seventh month, and the season will continue on through Tenth Month. Tickets are expected to go on sale soon in Walsh, Toring, Yves, and the Crowndon Capital.


BONUS: Here, have an updated map of the world of Blackwood Empire. Like any creative endeavor, its a work in progress, subject to change. It’s also not to scale, because I’m not a cartographer and also I’m bad with numbers. Still, it should give readers a basic idea of where everything is. It’s also gigantic, so if you’re having a hard time reading it, click on it to get a better view.


Blackwood Gazette #115-Track Construction Begins for Air Races, Despite Setbacks

Blackwood Gazette #48: Leading Aeronautics Manufacturer Announces Racing League

by Huxley Pruitt, Sports

29/7-The CEO of Pandion Aerodynamics, Mathis Galland, announced plans today to establish a racing league built around high speed air planes.

“Now is the moment to do so, I think,” Galland said in a press release. “Montpellier’s automotive racing circuit has proven to be quite successful, and with aeronautic technology starting to make some startling leaps and bounds, competition will be fierce. Public interest in aeronautics is at a high right now. There’s a ton of money to be had.”

Galland was careful to stress that his decision wasn’t motivated purely by business. As the world’s leading manufacturer of fighter planes (in conjunction with Rinkenbach Research and Development), Galland thinks that the league would provide a great opportunity to expand out of the shadow of military application.

“I want to build something that doesn’t have to do with killing people,” Galland said. “I don’t want Pandion to be the company remembered solely for the destruction of Crowndon’s fleet, and subsequent operations around the world. A racing league, like any sport, would serve to bring people together, create a community of people sharing an interest and fuel friendly competition.”

Several freelance pilots have already shown an interest in participating in the league. Many of them are former military pilots, but others are participants in small, often illegal, local leagues along the Demon’s Coast.

“Our participants are already ready and willing,” Galland said. “Right now, we are working on legalities, and compiling a rule set and infrastructure for the actual events.”

Expect to hear more on this burgeoning sport in the months ahead.

Blackwood Gazette #48: Leading Aeronautics Manufacturer Announces Racing League