In 2024, the Frecce Tricolori will visit U.S. and Canada for the first North American tour in more than 30 years.
On Nov. 23, 2023, during the presentation of the Italian Air Force 2024 calendar, Gen. Luca Goretti, the Chief of Staff of the Italian Air Force, announced that the Frecce Tricolori display team will return to North America next summer.
The team will fly over Canada, where RCAF (Royal Canadian Air Force) will celebrate the 100th anniversary next year, and then across the U.S. While no further details have been disclosed yet, Goretti said that the Frecce will also carry out a flyover and display over Los Angeles, to celebrate the arrival of the Amerigo Vespucci, the iconic full-rigged ship of the the Italian Navy (Marina Militare) which left Genoa harbor on a world tour on Jul. 1, 2023.
#Calendario2024 dell’#AeronauticaMilitare, il mese di gennaio racconta la mostra “Ali di Carta” e sulla pagina accanto la foto del velivolo G-91R, in volo insieme alle @FrecceTricolori su Pratica di Mare.
— Aeronautica Militare (@ItalianAirForce) November 23, 2023
The North American tour is the third one across U.S. and Canada and the first in more than 30 years. The first tour took place in 1986 and the second one in 1992.
We will provide an update about the 2024 tour as soon as we gather more details.
The Frecce Tricolori, also known as the Pattuglia Acrobatica Nazionale (PAN, Italian Aerobatic Team) is, undoubtedly, the most popular and visible component of the Italian Air Force as well as a symbol of Italy: with its 10 Italian built aircraft – the MB.339A/PAN – the “Frecce” (Italian for “Arrows”) – form one of the world’s most prestigious aerobatic teams. It holds a Guinness World record too: for the most jet aircraft in a military aerobatic display team.
The Italian Aerobatic Team is assigned to the 313° Gruppo Addestramento Acrobatico (Aerobatic Training Squadron) based at Rivolto Air Base, in northeastern Italy. The Frecce Tricolori are tasked with “representing the Air Force and Italy in both national and international air displays, and demonstrating, through the execution of collective aerobatic flight programmes, not only their professional and technical skills, but also the inventiveness and courage of an entire Armed Force and of Italy.”
The team has recently suffered an incident: on Sept. 16, 2023, one of the aircraft of the team crashed shortly after taking off from Turin Caselle airport, most probably as a consequence of a bird strike (the root cause of the mishap has not been disclosed yet, as the investigation is still in progress). While the pilot managed to eject from the plane, the wreckage of the aircraft slid along the ground breaking through the airport fence and hitting a car travelling on the road that runs alongside the airfield. Unfortunately a 5-year old girl was killed in the incident.
The team is equipped with the PAN version of the MB-339A, a single engine tandem seat training and tactical support aircraft. Apart from the livery (that, in the recent year, has been slightly modified to adopt special tails), the 313° Gruppo aircraft differ from the standard model serving with the Aeronautica Militare by the presence onboard of the coloured smokes generation system: this device is controlled by two buttons: one on the stick, for white smoke, and one on the throttle for coloured smoke. The system is fed from an under wing fuel tank filled with a colouring agent which is discharged through nozzles placed in the jet exhaust. The agent, vaporised in the jet exhaust, produces a coloured trail.
Similarly to 2021, when they decorated the tails with “liveries” inspired by the Italian Air Force display teams that represented Italy and its Air Force in the decade before the Frecce Tricolori were officially established, this year, they have adopted special tails to celebrate…
— The Aviationist (@TheAviationist) November 23, 2023