Thursday, 8 April 2010

Heavies hoping to be seen & heard at RIAT!

Last year at the RAF Fairford, there was a notable absence - that of the B1 bomber in the skies, sure enough one was on the deck in the static display, but it just wasn't the same as having a thunderous Lancer ripping the skies apart, and causing those stomachs to reverberate with it's special take off.

There was also the lack of a flying C-17 last year thanks to operational requirements, which of course takes priority over any air show plans, and rightly so, but still disappointing for the airshow fans. This year though there is already one booked in for the flying display, and with a bit of luck this year it will remain in the programme.

The B52 is also a regular at RIAT, with its screeching engines that bleed the ears nicely on take off, and that impressive nose down lift off too a common sight at Fairford, and hopefully this year we'll get to see it all again.

The Avro Vulcan is of course on its road to recovery once again after the public - largely thanks to a anonymous donation of £458,000 - brought her back from the brink of a trip to a museum, and I for one cannot wait to see the fantastic take off, and famous howl once again from those Olympus engines.

All that's needed now to complete the set would be a tasty C5 Galaxy - now that, along with the other heavies listed, would be a most fantastic air display to head to, and one that I'm sure would live very very long in the memory!

There is bound to be plenty of noise around Gloucestershire once again this year as the return of the F-18 Super Hornet has been confirmed, in what is always a powerful and ear bashing display, and the Us Navy will I'm sure be keen to put on a good show!

Another master blaster is the Typhoon which will almost certainly be showering the skies with bags of noise, and it may well team up with a Spitfire as part of the Heritage Flight at this year's air show which of course commemorates the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, and I'm sure officials are preparing a wonderful fly past similar to the 100 years of the Navy fly past last time, although lets hope none are so high and far away as the Sea Venom was!

There will also be the return to the skies of the RAF Role Demo, which will include after a four year absence, a return to the display for the Harrier GR9, and also not one, but 2 Tornado GR4's, so ear plugs at the ready!

As far as team displays are concerned, the Patrouille de France return in their Alpha Jets and are sure to decorate the skies in red, white and blue, as I'm sure will the world famous Red Arrows, who will have hoped to recover from their set back in Europe this year.

Moving across Europe a little, and the Dutch will be represented by the F16 Fighting Falcon once again, which will be sure to have people desperate to see if flares can be used, but unfortunately it looks as though that won't happen again this year.

One team that always makes its way over to the UK is the Royal Jordanian Falcons, who are now cemented in to the show's history, and always a delight to watch.

RIAT have also been celebrating participation from what will be the 52nd nation to support the Air Tattoo, that being the Sri Lankans, who are sending over an Antonov An-32B for this year's show, and will I'm sure be a highlight in the static park.

So, plenty of good things to look forward to, and once the B1, B52, and Vulcan are all confirmed as Flying, I'll certainly be counting down the hours, minutes, and seconds to the display this year, which is shaping up to be one of the best for many a year.

Now, what about the B2 anyone???

Monday, 22 March 2010

Rapturous welcome ready for F22 at RIAT

Some big news broke last week on the official RIAT website, as it was confirmed that the F22 Raptor would be winging its way over to this year's Royal International Air Tattoo in July.

This follows it's brief appearance at the cancelled 2008 event where the rain ensured the public didn't get to see too much of the sleak looking fighter.

So, this year, is a case of take two, and hopefully the weather will play ball and allow us all to see the F22 in action, in what we hope will be blue skies in the Cotswolds.

This is certain to boost ticket sales further, and is the first US act to be confirmed for the event, now all we need is many more to follow, and this will be one of the most eagerly awaited RIAT's of all time, what with the Vulcan being saved at the last minute, let's hope that the likes of the B1, B2, and B52 will all be present at the air show, with maybe the C5 Galaxy thrown in for good measure, it would be great to see a list of heavyweights thrown in there!

The Red Arrows will certainly be at RIAT this year, with the confirmation now on their website, along with the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, also confirmed on their site too.

Just under 4 months to go now until the event of the year, and the excitement is certainly building.

Next update soon.

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Participation List underway!

Well it's been a couple of months since the RIAT blog was last updated, and in the meantime the first news of participants has been breaking, so a chance to update on here...

The first confirmed act was a rare Cold War fighter from the Romanian Air Force, who have agreed to send over a couple of Mig 21 "Lancers" to the show which is a great coup for the RIAT Team. One of the aircraft will take part in the flying display, whilst the other will sit in the Static Park.

The "Lancer" looks set to leave military service in 2012, but is still used as NATO cover for Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia.

The Swiss national display team, the Patrouille Suisse are set to grace the skies over Gloucestershire in July, aswell as the P3 Flyers, who are set to send 4 of their Pilatus P3's over to display.

It is hoped that the Boing 757-200 from the New Zealand Air Force will return for a second successive year following an impressive display last year at RIAT.

It would certainly be another great chance for the public to see what was a truly great display in 2009.

There will I'm sure be further additions in the not too distant future as the countdown continues to the greatest military airshow in the world!