Waldo Stakes started building Sonic Wind in 1987, which was first conceived as a wheeled vehicle. He was led to the concept of running on blades when problems with the weight of a suspension system, wheels, bearings, axles and the gyroscopic effects of wheel and tire assemblies became apparent. Since then, Sonic Wind has gone through an extensive metamorphosis, and continues to do so. Sonic Wind is simple; it has almost no moving parts, an extremely low coefficient of drag, and runs on a flat surface - ice!
Waldo has come a long way from the boy who was fascinated by Land Speed cars like the Railton Mobil Special that ran 394.20mph. He's been studying Land Speed vehicles ever since - what works and what doesn't. On the Bonneville Salt Flats, he's worked with Kenny Lyon on his record holding BMW powered motorcycle streamliner, and with Ron Pruett on his record holding AG/CC '88 Thunderbird, "Pretty Woman." Presently, Waldo continues to update and refine Sonic Wind for its future on the ice.
Ken Mason is Waldo's partner and the genius behind Sonic Wind's modified LR-11, single thrust chamber, bi-propellant, rocket engine. Ken is a modern day Robert Goddard, a self-taught rocket engineer. Even as a teenager, Ken was building and firing liquid rocket engines. Later, as a protégé of Robert Truax, who attained national notoriety as the designer and builder of Evel Knievel's Skycycle, he learned even more about rockets. Since then, Ken has designed and built countless rocket systems for a large number of liquid fueled rockets that companies pioneering the way to commercial space flight have launched. With his wife Roxanna, they own "Mason Holodyne," a company based in New Mexico, that designs and tests liquid rocket systems. Waldo was first introduced to Ken by Robert Truax, in 1984, at the beginning of the Sonic Wind project.
Larry Hayes is a master fabricator of off-road racing equipment. He has built numerous championship off-road racers and sand dragsters, and is responsible for the design and construction of many of Sonic Wind's components. Larry can take a sketch on a napkin and win a race with it. His fabrication and welding skills have brought Sonic Wind from the drawing board to reality.
Jeff "Teaf" Teaford is an incredible artist, graphic designer, and conceptionalist with a deep automotive background. He designed Sonic Wind's logo, and does all art work for the project. He also scratch-designed the steering system and layed out the windshield. Always full of great ideas, Waldo can call him at anytime and ask, for example, "Teaf, how do I make this work?" One or more of his solutions is usually right on the money.
John Petri is the Sonic Wind project's crew chief and this website's original creator and photographer. Waldo and John met more than ten years ago when they were both helping Kenny Lyon with his BMW powered motorcycle streamliner, which has set 11 land speed records on the Bonneville Salt Flats. John has also worked on Jim Feuling's record holding front wheel drive B/Fuel streamliner, "The Hot Rod Lincoln," a C/Gas Altered '96 Mark VIII Lincoln, and other Bonneville projects. He's currently helping on an independent NHRA Top Fuel car based in Santa Barbara, California. John knows how to make most everything mechanical work, and oftentimes is the voice of reason when minds differ in the team's pursuit of the project's goals.
The Sonic Wind team wants to thank the companies and individuals that have helped us. We are headed into history and are grateful so many companies and individuals have the insight to come along with us!
|Acacia Construction Inc.||Adobe Valley Rocket Association|
|Aldora and Associates||A.T.O.M. Engineering|
|C. P. Construction||DayGlo Color Corporation|
|D and J Machine||Flowers Transportation|
|Free Flight Parachutes||G and J Surplus|
|Geo Cities||King Neptune's Pub|
|Larry Hayes Off Road Fabrication||Mason Holodyne|
|Mountain View Glass||MRC Machine|
|Norton Sales||Protection Development International Corp.|
|TomCat Racing||Lake George Winter Carnival|
|MRC Precision Machine
For machining our new design front ski
|Craig Adams||Denise Alley||Nells Anderson|
|Art Arfons||Jim Arnold||Dave Armbruster|
|Tygr Artemis||Don Baumea||Harley, Stephanie and Bishop Barden|
|Franklin Berger||Al Borneman||Craig Breedlove|
|Glen E. Brown||Mike Chamberlain||Kitty Carol Chappelle|
|Steve Clark||Jim Deist||Paul, Mark and Larry Derminer|
|Gary Douris||Steve and Gail Foster||Steve Garcia|
|John Gonzales||Charlie Griepentrog||Chuck "Moto" Guzy|
|Larry Hayes||Dan Hostetter||Steve James|
|Ken Johnson||Jocko Johnson||Tom, Cathleen and Tom Jr. Kelly|
|Donna Kent||Bill Knickerbocker||Jim "Out Laws" Laws|
|Bob Lazar||John Liskey||Alan London|
|Kenny Lyons||Douglas Malewicki||Ken and Roxanne Mason|
|Tommy "Tumac" Mason||Mariam Mason||Glen May|
|Dan McGinly||Roger McNabb||Dennis McNamee|
|Bundy Medveczy||Kevin "Carlos Montoya" Merrit||Wayne Newton|
|Jonathan Oakey||Rudy O'Hare||Peter H. Olley|
|Paul and Joan Oskarson||Mecky Oswald||Pat Paustian|
|Roy and Susan Payne||"Big John" Petri||Al Polidoro|
|Ron Pruett||Dan "Wind Wizard" Rubesh||Sean Quirk|
|Franklin Ratliff||Ricky Rodriguez||Chuck Rogers|
|Mario Satacruz||James and Nicole Stachurski||Kurt Schlenker|
|Cliff Schumaker||Norm Smith||Rick Snyder|
|Karen Stakes||Richard Stakes||Tone Stakes|
|Waldo Sr. and Celia Stakes||Col. John P. Stapp||Bill Summers|
|Jeff "Teaf" Teaford||Lorin Thomason||Robert Truax|
|Rob Uplinger||Mark Vaughn||Linda "The Crouton" Wilson|