The GOLD CUP AIR RALLY – GCAR – is a women’s cross-country competition flown in day VFR conditions. Challenges are based on questions related to the flight, identifying route landmarks from photos or by taking photos, calculations related to the flight, executing spot landings, scavenger hunts, or other surprises. All flights are VFR.

Usually each leg of the GCAR route has a set of questions or other challenges.

Scoring marks are awarded for the correct and completeness of answers on quizzes, fuel estimation, scavenger hunt items, and any other contests the committee includes during the rally. 

The Spot Landing contest is a separate award of the rally.


In 2000, the East Canada Section of the Ninety-Nines Governor Marilyn Dickson proposed a women’s air rally to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Ninety-Nines in Canada. Hence the name Gold Cup Air Rally. First prize winners’ names are engraved on the beautiful Gold Cup.

Goals of the rally are for participants to

  • expand our flying experiences, 
  • focus on safety during our flying,
  • meet the challenges of planning and flying longer cross country flights, and 
  • enjoy the camaraderie of other women pilots during longer trips.

The GCAR is a project of the East Canada Section 99s, which over the years has seen participants flying from east to west, north to south, across Canada and United States.


The GCAR is typically planned for 2 – 4 days which does not include flights to the starting point and home from the terminus. Destinations have varied over the years. 

Each leg is usually no more than a 3 hour duration at the speed of a C172.


Each airplane must have at least two pilots on board. All participants must be women, but need not be members of the Ninety-Nines.

The PIC must hold a current medical, a current license for the aircraft type flown, a minimum of 100 hours as PIC, and must be current as per CARS. 

The Co-Pilot may be a licenced or student pilot.

Non-licenced female participants may be accepted for the 3rd seat).


Each aircraft must have installed equipment and carry current documents as listed:

  • Functioning ELT, Mode C transponder
  • Functioning VHF radio(s)
  • Certificate of Airworthiness
  • Certificate of Registration
  • Approved POH 
  • Journey Log showing last Annual Inspection 
  • Weight and Balance data
  • Proof of Insurance valid for GCAR dates
  • Survival Equipment and clothing appropriate to the geography and season.