After months of training, the Red Arrows’ 2015 display season is officially getting underway, with a new Team Leader taking over this year. It marks the start of the 51st season for the team, which showcases the excellence of the Royal Air Force and represents the United Kingdom. More than 80 displays, involving precision flying by the Red Arrows’ nine fast-jet pilots, are expected to be performed in front of hundreds of thousands of people across the country and overseas between now and the end of September.
The new season will be the first as Team Leader for Squadron Leader David Montenegro.
The 38-year-old, who was previously in the Squadron as a team pilot between 2009 and 2011, has returned to the team as Red 1.
“On behalf of all of the team, we are hugely looking forward to performing the 2015 display and meeting members of the UK public throughout the next five months.”
For this year’s Red Arrows display, there are a number of new moves added to the show which Sqn Ldr Montenegro said he believes will prove popular with those watching.
The former Tornado pilot said: “New for this year is the Whirlwind, where all nine jets are seen rolling, before going into the Blackbird loop.
“Also, watch out for the revival of the Mirror Roll – which has not been flown by the team for five years. It involves Red 6 flying an inverted barrel roll at minus-2.5G with Reds 7, 8 and 9 in formation.”
He added: “In recognition of the 75thanniversary of the Battle of Britain and the Royal Air Force’s continued role in 2015 in securing the skies, we fly the shape of a Spitfire.
“In this manoeuvre, Reds 4 and 5 trail smoke to represent the wing tip vortexes seen in the intense battle over the United Kingdom.”
For 2015, the team’s BAE Systems Hawk T1 jets are carrying a new look – a Union flag-inspired tailfin to emphasise the Red Arrows’ role as ambassadors for the UK and its industry at home and overseas.
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