Support aircraft including tankers, surveillance, transport, helicopters are the backbone of any military arm. The celebration of the Royal Air Force’s centenary year saw a number of different types attend the Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT) at RAF Fairford in 2018.
Starting to become my kick off airshow for the new season each year, Duxford spring airshows feature a variety of display items to keep me on my toes. From warbirds to fast jets, it’s a good warm up for getting my eye in, practising panning and remembering which settings to use for each.
Duxford’s annual Battle of Britain Display is renowned for its mass Spitfire formations and premier warbird displays.
Day four at RIAT 2017. Although continuing the theme of grey low clouds, all display acts were able to perform on this day. One of the key highlights was the surprise flypast of a B-2 Spirit escorted by a pair of F-15’s to mark the 70th anniversary of the USAF. Other notable displays included the Ukrainian Su-27 Flanker, USAF Heritage Flight (F-22 and P-51), and Italian Tornado.
Day three at RIAT 2017. Unfortunately there were to be no blue skies, with low cloud & rain forcing early display acts to a taxi along the runway and the Midnight Hawks to disappear into the murk. However the cloud lifted sufficiently for later acts including the Thunderbirds and Ukranian Su-27 Flanker.
Day two: The main theme for RIAT 2017 was the 70th anniversary of the formation of the United States Air Force. Therefore there was a stronger USAF presence than in previous years with a welcome return after 10 years of the The Thunderbirds, the F-22A Raptor, and Osprey displays and flypasts from F-15’s, F-16’s and C-130. The Friday display included a unique flypast of the Red Arrows with the Thunderbirds.