Rollason Beta

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G-BADC Rollason Beta B.2A (9670532337).jpg
An amateur-built Beta
Role Single seat racing monoplane
Manufacturer Rollason Aircraft and Engines
First flight 21 April 1967
Number built 4 (factory-built)
5 (homebuilt)

The Rollason Beta was a British midget racing monoplane developed from a competition to build a Formula One air racer in the 1960s in England. The Beta was first flown on 21 April 1967. The aircraft were successful air-racers in England during the late 1960s and early 1970s.


The Beta was designed by the Luton Group (who were young technicians employed by the British Aircraft Corporation at Luton) in a competition for a racing aircraft, the Rollason Midget Racer Design Competition 1964. The original prototype Luton Beta was not completed. The design was built commercially by Rollason Aircraft and Engines, and plans were available for homebuilding. The Beta is a fully aerobatic wooden low-wing cantilever monoplane with a cantilever tailplane with a single fin and rudder. It has a fixed-tailwheel landing gear and an enclosed cockpit for the pilot.

Operational history[edit]

The first Rollason-built Beta (registered G-ATLY and named Forerunner) won the Manx Air Derby in 1969 and the second Rollason-built aircraft (registered G-AWHV and named Blue Chip) won the Goodyear Trophy air race at Halfpenny Green in 1969.


Luton Beta[1]
Several examples built.[2]
Powered by a 65hp Continental A65 engine, one built by Rollason later converted to B.2
Powered by a 90hp Continental C90 engine, two built by Rollason and one conversion from B.1
Powered by a 100hp Rolls-Royce Continental O-200-A engine, one built by Rollason.

Specifications (Beta B.2)[edit]

Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1971–72 [3]

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1
  • Wingspan: 20 ft 5 in (6.22 m)
  • Height: 5 ft 0 in (1.52 m)
  • Wing area: 66 ft2 (6.13 m2)
  • Empty weight: 560 lb (254 kg)
  • Gross weight: 850 lb (385 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Continental C90, 90 hp (67 kW)


  • Maximum speed: 202 mph (325 km/h)
  • Cruise speed: 160 mph (257 km/h)
  • Range: 320 miles (515 km)
  • Service ceiling: 20,000 ft (6,100 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,800 ft/min (9.1 m/s)


  1. ^ Air Trails: 78. Winter 1971. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ "Luton Beta". Retrieved 4 September 2013.
  3. ^ Taylor 1971, p.206.

External links[edit]