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Maintainers ace Rodeo C-17 pre-flight

Reservists Tech. Sgt. Burke Stott, left, and Master. Sgt. Kevin Smith, 446th Airlift Wing maintenance team members from McChord Air Force Base, Wash., greet it other as they cross paths during Rodeo 2007, held July 23-27 at McChord. (U.S. Air Force photo/Abner Guzman)

Reservists Tech. Sgt. Burke Stott, left, and Master. Sgt. Kevin Smith, 446th Airlift Wing maintenance team members from McChord Air Force Base, Wash., greet it other as they cross paths during Rodeo 2007, held July 23-27 at McChord. (U.S. Air Force photo/Abner Guzman)

Members of the 446th Airlift Wing's Rodeo maintenance team, McChord Air Force Base, Wash.,  push a cart away from the C-17 during Rodeo 2007, held July 23-27 at McChord. (From left to right) Tech. Sgt. Michael Silva, Master Sgt. Michael Stewart, Tech. Sgt. Thomas Teal and Tech. Sgt. Thomas Timney. (U.S. Air Force photo/Abner Guzman)

Members of the 446th Airlift Wing's Rodeo maintenance team, McChord Air Force Base, Wash., push a cart away from the C-17 during Rodeo 2007, held July 23-27 at McChord. (From left to right) Tech. Sgt. Michael Silva, Master Sgt. Michael Stewart, Tech. Sgt. Thomas Teal and Tech. Sgt. Thomas Timney. (U.S. Air Force photo/Abner Guzman)

McCHORD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. -- Long hours, little rest and dirty work paid off for the 446th Airlift Wing's Rodeo maintenance team, which brought home the Best C-17 Pre-flight award from Air Mobility Command's Rodeo 2007. 

The 10-person maintenance crew competed July 23-27 at McChord AFB in C-17 pre-flight, refueling and post-flight competitions. They were also scored on daily safety observations. 

A pre-flight inspection covers all parts of the aircraft. In the Rodeo competition, maintainers must follow a checklist and thoroughly inspect the plane within a prescribed time limit. With a 600 possible points up for grabs, the 446th AW Rodeo maintainers scored 599. 

"Our competitions are really about the team. The 10 of us worked really hard and it is more important to us to come home at the end of the day knowing we worked our hardest," said Tech. Sgt. Michael Silva, first time Rodeo participant. 

Rodeo 2007 brought together nine 446th AMXS air reserve technicians and one 446th Maintenance Squadron ART, who compiled their vast knowledge and personalities for the competition. 

Although Rodeo is a competition, the maintenance team doesn't use that as motivation to do their job, but is humble about the entire experience. 

"On a daily basis there are a lot of lives in our hands, so we've gotta just put that into perspective and just come in and do our job 100 percent everyday," said Tech. Sgt. Burke Stott, 446th AMXS. 

Team motivation and hard work brought home a trophy for the Reserve team and proved again that McChord is among the best of maintainers in the Air Force.