Spot Landing Rules


Contestants will meet in the transient parking area at Gila Bend Municipal Airport (E63) at 8:30 a.m. to go over rules and draw for order. We usually finish up the contest by about 10:30 or 11:00 a.m. and head to a nearby airport restaurant for lunch.

A chalk line or other suitable “spot” indication will be designated on the runway. Each contestant will make three landings as close as possible to the designated point on the runway but not short of it. Approaches may be with power or power-off. Power off approaches are scored at half the actual distance. Only each contestant’s shortest landing will be used to determine winner, second, and third places.


Any Star Aero Club member, guest, or visitor, who is present at the contest site, and who has attended the pre-contest briefing and paid any required entry fee, may participate.


If you would like to participate please send an E-mail to the event coordinator with your aircraft type and N number. If you can not participate in the contest we could use a few volunteers to help mark spots and measure distances. If you or someone you know would be interested in helping out let us know.

Registration is open to all interested competitors. Entry fee/ante is $20, and will be used exclusively for the prize fund.


Line – A lateral division of the runway surface.  The line may be a temporary marking for the contest, an existing runway marking, or an unmarked extension from a prominent feature at, or close to, the runway edge.  (Use of the leading edge of an existing 1000ft landing marker has proven to be a good solution).

Attempt – Any approach made with the intention of participating in the contest whether it results in a landing or not.

Landing – An approach that results in at least one main wheel being in continuous contact with the runway surface for at least 5 seconds.  The same wheel does not have to remain in contact but at least one wheel must be in contact for 5 seconds.  (5 seconds was chosen as being long enough to eliminate a bounce but short enough that it would be exceeded for any landing that was followed by a rolling takeoff.  There is no requirement to measure this time).

Landing point – The point during the landing at which continuous contact of either main wheel with the runway begins.

Good attempt – An attempt that results in a landing point beyond the line but for which the first contact of either main wheel with the runway surface is not short of the line (On the line shall be considered a good attempt)

Bad attempt – An attempt that terminates in a Go Around, or which has first main wheel contact short of the line. (Go Arounds required because of traffic conflicts shall not count as attempts).

Landing distance – The estimated or measured distance between the line and the landing point of a good attempt.

Use of power – Attempts may be made with or without power on final approach.  Attempts for which idle power is set before turning base leg, and for which no power is added before landing, shall be scored at half the achieved landing distance.  If power is used after the base turn the attempt shall be scored as a power-on attempt.

Scored distance – If power is used, then scored distance shall be equal to landing distance.  If power is not used after the turn to base leg then scored distance shall be half the landing distance. (There is no penalty for attempting a power off landing and then deciding to use power)

Procedure and Scoring

Each entrant shall be allowed 3 attempts.  Only good attempts shall be scored. (An entrant who lands short of the line on all three attempts will not be scored).

Ground observers shall record, to the best of their ability, the landing point of all good attempts.  Bad attempts shall be recorded.  Distance short may be recorded but is not required for scoring the contest.

First place shall be awarded to the entrant with the lowest scored distance. Second place shall be awarded to the entrant with the second lowest scored distance. Third place shall be awarded to the entrant with the third lowest scored distance. In determining places it shall be assumed that no contestant may be awarded more than one place.

In the event of a tie for any place the next lowest scored distance of the tied entrants shall be used as a tie breaker. If neither entrant has a second lowest distance, the entrants may each make one additional attempt. These additional attempts shall be used only to break the tie for the place in contention and shall not qualify for a higher place award.

If no entrant meets the requirements for a place award then all contestants, except those who already qualify for a higher place award, may make one additional attempt. These additional attempts shall be used only to qualify for the place in contention and shall not qualify for a higher place award.


Prizes will be awarded as follows:

First place:       50% of prize fund
Second place:  30% of prize fund
Third place:     20% of prize fund