ItAF stopovers in Lajes, Azores

Strategically located in the Atlantic Ocean, some 3.700 chilometers from New York City and about 1.600 chilometers from Lisbon, Lajes airbase, in the Azores (Portugal), is one of the most frequent stopovers for military traffic on the Middle East/Europe – US routes. US aircraft of all types and services, coming back from TDY in support of various operations or deploying to the CONUS (CONtinental US) often pay visit to the Portuguese airport. Miguel Santos is a retired PoAF Lt.Col. and an aircraft spotter and photographer who lives in Terceira island, Azores, and who has often the opportunity to take extremely interesting pictures and logs of the visiting aircraft. Fortunately, he’s also a reader of this blog and offered me the opportunity to publish some pictures he took of the Tornados IDS and ECR deploying to the Red Flag in Alaska and returning to Italy and of the two batches of leased US F-16ADFs being returned by the Aeronautica Militare to the 309th AMARG (Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group), Davis-Monthan AFB, near Tucson, AZ.
Dealing with the  Tornados, Miguel provided the images and the following detailed informations about the deployments:

Arr. Dep. C/s Type Serial/Code

04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO11 CE-115 TOR ECR MM7068/50-46
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO12 CE-115 TOR ECR MM7052/50-02
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO13 CE-115 TOR ECR MM7021/50-01
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO14 CE-115 TOR ECR MM7055/50-42
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO15 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7058/6-11
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO16 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7015/6-32
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 BLUE61 KC10A MPRS 60028
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 BLUE72 K35R 38019/D
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 I2183 C130J MM62186/46-51
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO21 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7007/6-01
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO22 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7043/6-25
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO23 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7011/6-13
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO24 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7071/6-12
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO25 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7038/6-37
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 RETRO26 CE-115 TOR IDS MM7026/6-35
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 BLUE71 KC10A MPRS 70123
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 I2184 C130J MM62175/46-40
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 I2182 KC130J MM62183/46-48
04-Jun-10 05-Jun-10 I2181 C130J-30 MM62188/46-54

14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO11 CE-116 TOR IDS MM7058/6-11
14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO12 CE-116 TOR IDS MM7043/6-25
14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO13 CE-116 TOR IDS MM7071/6-12
14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO14 CE-116 TOR IDS MM7015/6-32
14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO15 CE-116 TOR IDS MM7026/6-35
14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO16 CE-116 TOR IDS MM7007/6-01
14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 BLUE61 DC10 50030
14-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 I2184 C130J MM62186/46-51
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO21 CE-116 TOR MM7068 / 50-46
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO22 CE-116 TOR MM7052 / 50-02
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO23 CE-116 TOR MM7021 / 50-01
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO24 CE-116 TOR MM7055 / 50-42
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO25 CE-116 TOR MM7011 / 6-13
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 RETRO26 CE-116 TOR MM7038 / 6-37
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 BLUE71 DC10 30080
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 BLUE72 K35R .00335
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 I2185 C130J MM62175/46-40
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 I2183 C130J MM62191/46-57
15-Jul-10 16-Jul-10 I2182 C130J MM62188/46-54


About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.