In the year and a half I had been acting as a safety chase pilot flying a T-38, F-4 or F-104, the XB-70 had many close calls.
The takeoff chase pilot launched first, climbed over Rogers Dry Lake, and pulled up into a downwind pattern opposite the heading of the XB-70, which was awaiting start of takeoff roll on Runway 04.
Chase pilots routinely accompanied the XB-70 on every flight.
Flight procedures had not been published nor briefed to safety chase pilots on any special precautions to be taken in flying very close to the XB-70.
Because of its many mechanical problems, chase pilots
nicknamed it "Cecil, the Seasick Sea Serpent." Marrett tells the story of one sad flight in June 1966, when his regular T-38 mission was changed because the number two Valkyrie had crashed north of Barstow.