RIAT 2018 is thus called among aviation enthusiasts the largest airshow in the world organized in support of the Royal Air Force Charitable Trust: the Royal International Air Tattoo, which takes place every year at RAF Fairford Air Base in Gloucestershire (UK).
This year at RIAT the 100th anniversary of the Royal Air Force (RAF) was also celebrated. RAF100 this is the symbol for the centenary of the British air forces, a symbol reported on many aircraft of both RAf and the guests taking part in the festivities.
Over 350 aircraft and 180,000 spectators during the weekend, these are the numbers that catch the eye for the RIAT 2018, an edition with a wonderful weather and that only on Friday has rained.
Present the Frecce tricolori, the PC7 Team, the Patrulla Aguila, the Royal Jordanian Falcons and the Red Arrows. These are the most important names among the many other displays of various world air forces.
The spectators present were able to admire the best flight displays during the week and on the show’s weekend. The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight presented with the overflight and the different displays of the strong emotions to the public. On Friday, the RAF100 was also scheduled for the flypast of 100 RAF airplanes, but due to a heavy thunderstorm that hit the air base it was canceled and unfortunately it was not possible to recover the passage on Saturday. In fact, on Saturday there was the overflight of a squadron of 9 Eurofighter Typhoon FGR4 and BBMF.
In any case, the public was not disappointed by the expectations: the USAF with its Boeing CV-22B Osprey, the surprise of overfly the Northrop B2-A “Spirit of New York” USAF escorted by two F15 and a wonderful performance of the F35B Lightning of the RAF. USAF Heritage Flight present with an F35A that together with Spitfire and P51 Mustang gave rise to an exciting display. Spectacular air battle simulation with World War I aircraft, which have delighted the eyes of the public with evolutions and hunting actions surrounded by antiaircraft and ground attack simulation created by the pyrotechnic company FFX Ltd.
And how not to mention the various Solo Display present: SoloTürk and Team Zeus, Rafale of the Armee de l’Air and the Belgian F16, Gripen of the Czech air forces and Finnish F18, the Eurofighter and the Italian T346 of the RSV, the Polish Demo Team with his F16C and the Swiss Hornet Display Team, the Canadian CF-18 Demonstration Team with its splendid livery and many others between civilians and military, historical and modern.
Impressive and spectacular is the performance of the Sukhoi SU-27 “Flanker” Ukrainian, who since the arrival in pairs and in escort of Ilyushin IL76, always Ukrainian, has thrilled all the fans present with spectacular performances. Not least the Eurofighter Typhoon Solo Display of the RAF with the symbol of the RAF100 on the tail, as well as on the A400 Demo Display of the Airbus Defence and many other aircraft. A400 who showed his skills with a supreme performance that however had to be compared by the evolution of the C27J “Spartan” of the Italian “RSV – Reparto Sperimentale Volo” (Experimental Flight Department). Even if the dimensions of the two aircraft are very different, both have shown a not-indifferent maneuverability. It is a must to mention the performances of the Couteau Delta of the Armee de l’Air and the Rafale of the French “Marine”. Wednesday, late in the evening, also the arrival of the Protector RG Mk1 (General Atomics MQ-9B Skyguardian), exposed only in the static, after crossing the Atlantic Ocean thus representing the first remote-controlled aircraft to make this crossing.
The vast static display, as always, has engaged the public and the presence of many pilots among the various stands has created an important and pleasant union between the military and civilians. Very important to ensure our trust in those people who are divided between giving us great emotions with their acrobatics and defending our skies from any danger. And I add that they also pushed the fans to get closer to the various solidarity associations present in the numerous stands.
Like every year among the best Airshows in the world, like every year full of airplanes and emotions. The RIAT 2018 has satisfied everyone and has worthily honored the celebrations of the centenary of one of the best World Air Forces the Royal Air Force.
From RAF Fairford: Daniele Maiolo.
Best Shot Aircraft Team