Exclusive photos: IAF F-15D performing 360° roll after take off

In a previous post, published on this site on Feb. 9, 2011, titled Israeli F-15 pilot jailed after performing dangerous maneuvers at Decimomannu I explained that a pilot and a navigator of the 106 Sqn of the Israeli Air Force, based at Tel Nof, were sent to prison for 7 days and suspended from flight activities for one year, after performing a 360° roll after take off from Decimomannu airbase, in Sardinia, where the aircraft was detached for Exercise Vega 2010. After reading my article, Tony Lovelock, a British journalist and photographer, sent me a message to tell me that he was there when the IAF pilot made the 360° roll and that he had taken pictures of the entire maneuver. Below you can find the entire, unbelievable sequence of pictures Tony was able to shot to the F-15D 90-0275/733 at Decimomannu on Nov. 19, 2010; 8 shots taken in about 4 seconds. According to the Exif of the photos, the whole sequence of shots took place between 10.23.37LT and 10.23.44LT while the time between the third shot, as he started the roll, and the last, being 4 seconds: 10.23.40LT – 10.23.44LT. Here’s how Tony commented his own pictures: “Sadly, not all the shots are as sharp as I would have liked, but from the position I was shooting from, there is a tall tree close to my left; as he passed this, I stopped following him, the next second he was into his party act, and I had to catch up with him again. This was not as easy as it would seem, as he appeared to be going in all conceivable directions at the same time, and getting increasingly further away with each second”. Even if some images might be not as sharp as Tony would have liked, they are the only documentary evidence of the unusual maneuver that cost so much to the Israeli pilot.

Click below to open the file with the entire sequence of 8 pictures (from right to left) taken by Tony Lovelock at Decimomannu on Nov. 19, 2010.


About David Cenciotti 3890 Articles
David Cenciotti is a freelance 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 four books.