Tag Archives: Turkish Stars

Here Are The Highlights Of Malta International Airshow 2017

Once again, the traditional airshow brought several interesting visitors to Malta.

On Sept. 23 and 24, Malta hosted the yearly airshow over Smart City that gathered many interesting aircraft, including some exotic attendeeds, rarely seen at airshows around Europe.

Among them, one of the three Royal Canadian Air Force CF-188 Hornets of the 433 Squadron deployed to Solenzara airbase, Corse, to take part in Serpentex 2017 exercise alongside the RAF Tornado GR4s of the IX(B) Sqn deployed to Decimomannu, Sardinia (two of those took part in the static display at Malta Luqa airport).

Other interesting visitors were the “Turkish Stars” and accompanying A400M, the RAF Hawk T2, the “Saudi Hawks”, the German Navy P-3 and the Alpha Jet Solo Display.

In this post you can find some of the most interesting aircraft that took part in the airshow, photographed by aviation photographer Estelle Calleja.

A Turkish Air Force A400 supported the deployment to Malta of the NF-5 of the Turkish Stars display team.

The AlphaJet Solo Display was one of the highlights of the show. The French Air Force brought back the Alpha Jet Solo Display, it shut down in 2012.

The AW.139 helicopter and the King Air B200 of the Armed Forces of Malta Air Wing.

The Leonardo AW.139 of the Guardia di Finanza (Custom Police) was the only Italian participant this year.

The Royal Canadian Air Force took part in the airshow with one CF-188 Hornet of the 433 Squadron deployed to Solenzara for the Serpentex 2017 exercise.

One of the two RAF British Aerospace Hawk T2 ZK022 of 4(R)Sqn based at Valley.

A P-3C Cup Orion of the Marineflieger about to land in Malta Luqa airport.

A U.S. Navy P-8 Poseidon from VP-16 took part in the airshow. The aircraft is deployed to Sigonella airbase, Sicily, Italy, from where it conducts missions over the Black Sea and off Syria.

The Hawk Mk65 of the Saudi Hawks, the aerobatic team of the Royal Saudi Air Force.

A Tornado GR4 from IX Sqn. The unit was temporarily deployed to Decimomannu, Italy, to take part in Serpentex 2017.

One of the NF-5A Freedom Fighters of the Turkish Air Force aerobatic team “Turkish Stars”.


Image credit: Estelle Calleja

This HUD video of the Turkish Stars NF-5As performing the 2×2 cross maneuver will give you chills

Pretty impressive.

The following video was filmed from aboard the NF-5A #3 of the Turkish Stars (Turkish: Türk Yıldızları), the aerobatic demonstration team of the Turkish Air Force during an airshow.

The footage includes captions that let you understand what happens during the “2×2 cross” maneuver, when the #1 and #3 aircraft cross with the #2 and #4 coming from the opposite direction at an altitude of around 270 feet above the ground and a relative speed of about 1,600 km/h.

Towards the end the clip you’ll see how close the aircraft of the two section pass one another.


Close call: two Turkish Air Force NF-5 jets almost collide during aerobatic display

Two NF-5s belonging to the Turkish aerobatics team, Turkish Stars, almost collided over Konya, during a display practice.

Filmed in 2009, the following video shows two NF-5 of the Turkish Air Force aerobatic team “Turkish Stars” coming quite close to collide mid-air during a display practice over Konya airbase, the homebase of the famous Anatolian Eagle exercise.

According to the user who uploaded the video to Liveleak, Major Evren Ayna, the pilot who was flying inverted, describes the moment in these words:

“Every job has its own risks. Of course, you can’t always be prepared for everything. But having good reflexes is good and expecting the unexpected saves lives. This video is a proof that this kind of things is not fun and games. It shows our effort and self-sacrifice. This video was taken in 2009, during a training session in Konya. My plane suffers a mechanical failure and we cheat death. I’m the one in inverted flight. :)”


Disbandment of Swiss Air Force display team could make its “Flat Eric” yellow puppet mascot unemployed

The Patrouille Suisse is one of the most renowned aerobatic display team in Europe.

Equipped with the F-5E Tiger the team is, together with the Turk Yildizlari (Turkish Stars), that flies the NF-5A/B  Freedom Fighter, the only European display team on supersonic fighter jets.

Despite being regularly invited to attend airshows across the continent, the Patrouille Suisse could be forced to stand down from 2016 as a consequence of budget cuts.

Indeed, beginning in 2016, the ageing F-5 fleet will be progressively retired and replaced by the first Gripen examples and, simply, there will not be many military aircraft in the Swiss Air Force, at least, not enough to equip an aerobatic display team.

In spite of Swiss Minister of Defense claims that the Patrouille Suisse will survive transiting on the F-18 Hornet or the new JAS-39 Gripen (even if the Swiss Parliament has suspended the purchase of the Sweden fighters ordered in 22 examples) the chances that there will be enough resources to dispatch some of these few frontline fighters to the team appear scarce.

Along with the team, even its mascot and honorary member “Flat Eric” will probably be put apart.

Flat Eric is a yellow puppet character from Levi’s commercials that is part of the Patrouille Suisse since 2000. It flies on board aircraft number 2.

Flat Eric - mascot of the Patrouille Suisse

Image credit: Daniel Rychcik/Flickr

One of the maneuvers performed by the team and called “Flat Mirror” is dedicated to Flat Eric: it consists of the classic mirror performed by the two team solos during a schneider turn.

One of Flat Eric’s distinctive characteristic is that it wears a Red Arrows flight suit since 2004, when it was kidnapped by the British aerobatic display team: when it reappeared in the spring of 2005 it was adorned with this special dress.

Since it belongs to the Patrouille Suisse, it follows the team in every air show and deployment; moreover “Flati”, as it is affectionately called by other team members, posses his own Swiss Air force identification card and a log book like all other Swiss pilots.

If the Patrouille Suisse will eventually be disestablished in 3 or 4 years, the airshow circus will not only lose one of its main and best aerobatic display teams, but also one of the most funny mascottes.

David Cenciotti has contributed to this article

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Zeltweg Air Power 2009

On Jun. 26 and 27, Matteo Marianeschi attended the Zeltweg Air Power 2009, in Styria, Austria. Here’s a selection of pictures he took at the airshow (that saw the first official appearance of the Austrian Eurofighter Typhoon) and at the local aviation museum.