April 19-21,  2013

Hosted By:

University Multispectral Labs (UML), Oklahoma State University, NASA OK Space Grant Consortium, Zivko Aeronautics, Spirit AeroSystems, AUVSI


Speedfest is an exciting, high-speed aircraft design competition which is intended to foster enthusiasm for aviation, and unmanned aircraft design.  There are two flight classes:   Alpha Class is the Advanced class which is open to all collegiate-level teams.  India Class is the Invitational class.  It is open to high-school level teams on an invitational basis.  The top 3 teams in each class will be recognized with awards.  The winners of each class will be awarded the Speedfest Cup.

India Class News and Answers to Questions
Suggestions for India Class Teams and Teachers

Mission Requirements and Design Constraints
Flight Procedures and Scoring
Safety Requirements
General Aircraft Requirements
Additional Information
Entry Form Format
Speedfest Site

Mission Requirements

Design Constraints

Flight Procedures and Scoring


Scoring is based on distance traveled (laps) within two minutes, on a course with 2 turn markers spaced 600ft. apart.  One point is awarded for each turn marker crossed (including the first).  Where a plane finishes in any one heat does not affect score.  Teams are ranked on the best score that they obtained at any point during the event.


Teams in a tie will race head to head for fastest time to complete 10 laps.  If more than three teams are in a tie, multiple heats will be used, and best time will determine the winner.

Additional Awards:

In addition to the Speedfest Cup awards for racing, and the optional promotional video award, the Speedfest organizers will make additional awards to India class teams in the following categories:

Safety Requirements

Safety must be the number one priority of all contest participants. The Speedfest organizers have gone to great lengths to keep the event safe for participants and spectators.  Please carefully note the following:

General Aircraft Requirements

Landing Gear
No part of the aircraft may be jettisoned or fall off, including, landing gear which must stay with the aircraft at all times.  For example, no “dollies” or sleds.  

Metal propellers are prohibited.  Teams must paint the tips of their propellers (at least 0.5 inches) on both sides, white, or another bright color.  This is to reduce chances of injury. (Teams should balance their propellers after they are painted.)

Radio Gear:
Only 2.4 GHz spread spectrum radios will be allowed.  A standard radio range check will be conducted.

Range check and Fail-Safe:
Aircraft receivers must be programmed with a fail safe system which will cut off engine power if signal is lost or interrupted.  Operation of this feature must be demonstrated.  A standard range check must also be demonstrated using the procedure detailed in the transmitter manual.

Team Numbering
Each team will mark their airplane with their team number which will be assigned by the Speedfest organizers.  Each airplane must be numbered on the port wing (left side as viewed from sitting in the cockpit) top AND bottom of the wing.  Numbers must be 10 inches tall, and at least 1 inch thick.  The bottom of the number should face the wingtip so that the judges can easily read the team number during turns.  Teams may choose the number colors, but the color chosen should be the highest contrast possible with the background color of the wing so that it is easy to see from a distance.  Teams should take care to choose fonts, or number styles so that it is difficult to mistake a number when it is upside down (such as 6 and 9) or from other numbers (1 and 7, 4 and 9).   The picture below illustrates a properly numbered airplane:

Preflight Airworthiness Inspection of Aircraft
During registration, all aircraft shall undergo a safety inspection.  Safety inspections will be conducted using the same team queue numbers discussed above.
Safety inspectors will be simply checking the following:

  1. Push/pull rods or cables, control horns, and servo leads shall be installed in such a way that they will not become disconnected in flight. Clevises must have a "keeper mechanism."  
  2. All screws holding the engine to the mount and the mount to the firewall shall be in place and secure.
  3. For India class: The radio receiver and battery pack shall be surrounded by soft foam rubber or other vibration-dampening material and adequately protected against contamination by engine exhaust, raw fuel, or fuel residue.
  4. Control surfaces shall be firm on the hinge line without excessive play.
  5. Servos shall be mounted securely with little play.
  6. Pushrods shall have only one threaded end that is free to turn. 
  7. Wings, if removable, shall be securely attached to the fuselage by some mechanical means such as bolts.
  8. The aircraft shall be free of obvious indications of structural damage which may compromise safety.
  9. Alpha aircraft must have an external arming shunt discussed in the Safety Requirements section.
  10. Spinner or prop nut used to secure propeller.
  11. Teams must have propeller tips painted a bright color.
  12. Range check and fail-safe check
  13. Safety Gear Check:  Flight crew must verify that each member has a helmet.  Flight crew airplane handlers must also verify gloves and safety glasses.  Teams must each bring their own safety gear.
  14. Proof of prior flight.  Teams must demonstrate proof of prior flight.  This may be done using pictures or video evidence.
Any aircraft that has been damaged after a safety inspection or has a known history of problems shall not be permitted to fly until it has been satisfactorily repaired and re-inspected. Materials used for repair may come from any source.

Confirmation of class rules:
Judges will also confirm that all aircraft entered comply with the Design Constraints listed above.

Additional Information
Contest-Day Information
Flight Sequence

Optional Speedfest Team Promotional Video Award

Speedfest Teams that create promotional videos have the opportunity to be recognized at the event, and to receive awards.  Videos can promote: their team, airplane, school, Speedfest, or any combination of these in an entertaining and informative way.

Teams will link their videos to the SpeedfestUSA page no later than April 12, and the winner will be chosen by electronic voting.  There are no restrictions on who may vote.  Votes will be accumulated from April 12, until Speedfest contest day.


Entry Form Format

1 October, 2012:  India Class Entries for Speedfest III have reached the limit. No more can be accepted.  High school students and teachers are still welcome to attend and volunteer at the event.

Send an email with the following information in the following format for each team entered:

-  Team Name
-  Academic institution name.
-  Team Contact information
-  Class to be entered

In the Subject line of your email write:  “Speedfest Entry Request, (Team Name), (date)”

Subject line example:  Speedfest Entry Request, SHS Lancers, 21Sept2012

Send entries to:  



Contest Site

Speedfest is held at the Unmanned Aircraft Flight Station (UAFS) in Stillwater, Oklahoma.  
GPS Location: lat=36.1632229 lon=-96.836514
Stillwater Oklahoma is approximately 75 miles from two major airports: Tulsa International Airport in Tulsa, OK,  and Will Rogers Airport in Oklahoma City, OK.  

Airfield Directions:  From all directions, the best way to get to the UAFS is to drive to the intersection of Hwy 51 (E 6th st.) and N. Clay Road (bulls-eye in map below). Then take Clay road north approximately 3.2 miles.  The UAFS is just north of the intersection of N. Clay Rd. and E. Airport Rd.  

Speedfest Site Diagram and Course Layout

India Class News and Answers to Questions


2 February, 2013:  Note the new requirement for "proof of prior flight."  This may be accomplished using pictures or video.  Also, if needed, teams may fly Friday afternoon, or saturday morning of the contest between 7-8:30

1 October, 2012:  India Class Entries for Speedfest III have reached the limit. No more can be accepted.  High school students and teachers are still welcome to attend and volunteer at the event.

Answers to Questions