Home » Air Drive Thunderbirds Making ready for an ‘Superb’ Worldwide Airshow Season

2019 Airshow Schedule
2020 Airshow Schedule


Air Drive Thunderbirds Making ready for an ‘Superb’ Worldwide Airshow Season

Thunderbird left wing pilot Capt. Will "Boar" Graeff signals his readiness prior to practice this week. (USAF)

Excessive efficiency flight demonstrations by the Air Drive Thunderbirds will return to the skies in a number of weeks because the elite pilots and repair personnel put together for the squadron’s historic worldwide air show season.

Winter coaching is underway with the Air Drive’s flight demonstration crew training and learning formations aboard their F-16 jets, and within the classroom in preparation for the brand new season. The crew of six pilots are scheduled to carry out their conventional first public flight over the Daytona 500 race in February.

Capt. Michael Brewer stands earlier than an F-15E Strike Eagle final July at Seymour Johnson AFB. Capt. Brewer is at the moment coaching as a Thunderbird pilot. (Picture: USAF TSgt. D. Carbajal)

Capt. Michael Brewer has taken the reigns because the Thunderbirds new proper wing pilot. Capt. Brewer, who flies underneath the decision signal “Thorny”, is worked up to start coaching and to carry out along with his new squadron.

“It’s going to be superb,” Brewer mentioned in a latest Air Drive launch. “Being a Thunderbird permits you to encourage tens of 1000’s of individuals at an air present. And we get to try this a number of occasions a yr.”

Brewer was based mostly at Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C. the place he served as an F-15 Strike Eagle pilot for practically two years previous to becoming a member of the Thunderbirds. The Thunderbirds are scheduled to carry out at Seymour Johnson in April.

The Thunderbirds are a drive of over 120 enlisted airmen and 11 officers, women and men working collectively to showcase the function of the US Air Drive. The team recently welcomed 4 new pilots and a medical physician for the brand new season.

The squadron will spotlight the season with their return to Dayton, Ohio. The Thunderbirds had been pressured to cancel their June 2017 look when one in every of their jets crashed on touchdown at Dayton Worldwide Airport throughout inclement climate. The 2 crew members survived, nonetheless the $29 million F-16D was totaled.

America’s Ambassadors in Blue are led by new crew commander Lt. Col. John “Brick” Caldwell. Thunderbirds 2 by Eight are pilots Capt. Will “Boar” Graeff (left wing), Capt. Michael “Thorny” Brewer (proper wing), Main Whit “Skate” Collins (slot), Main Blaine “Spider” Jones (solo); Capt. Michelle “Mace” Curran (opposing solo), Main Eric “Miami” Gorney (operations officer), and Main Jason “Flack” Markzon (advance pilot and narrator).

F-16 Combating Falcon pilot “Mace” Curran is in coaching as solely the second feminine solo within the Thunderbirds historical past. She is going to function the opposing solo. (Picture: USAF)

Curran turns into solely the fourth feminine pilot in Thunderbirds historical past and solely their second feminine solo pilot in 66 years. Mace arrived at Nellis, AFB in November having spent one yr as an F-16 teacher pilot on the 301st Fighter Wing in Fort Price.

“There are such a lot of sturdy girls who’ve paved the best way for me to have the ability to do what I do as we speak,” Capt. Curran mentioned in an Air Drive interview. “From the WASPs in WWII, to the primary feminine fighter pilot within the Air Drive, Jeannie Leavitt. They’ve damaged boundaries and completed nice issues.”

Up to date 2019 Thunderbirds Schedule:

February 17: Daytona 500, Daytona Seashore, FL Flyover (2:24 p.m.)

March 3: Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Nevada (Flyover)

March 23/24: Davis-Monthan AFB, Thunder and Lightning Over Arizona

March 30/31: Travis AFB, California, Thunder Over the Bay

April 6/7: Waco, Texas – Coronary heart of Texas Air Present

April 13/14: Open Date

April 27/28: Seymour Johnson AFB, NC Wings over Wayne Open Home

Might 4/5: Keesler, AFB, Mississippi Thunder Over the Sound

Might 11/12: JB Andrews, Maryland JB Andrews Air Present

Might 18: Kirtland AFB, New Mexico Air and Area Fiesta

Might 25/26: Wantagh, New York Jones Seashore Air Present

Might 30: USAF Academy, Colorado

June half of: Offutt AFB, Nebraska Defenders of Freedom Air Present

June 8/9: Fort Wayne (IN) Air Present

June 15/16: Mankato, Minnesota Air Spectacular

June 22/23: Dayton (OH) Air Present

June 29/30: North Kingstown, Rhode Island

July 13/14: Rionegro (Medellin), Colombia, SA

July 20-21: Fargo (ND) Air Present

July 24: Cheyenne (WY) Frontier Days

July 27/28: Milwaukee (WI) Air and Water Present

August 10/11: Abbotsford (BC) Worldwide Air Present

August 17/18: Sioux Falls (SD) Air Present

August 21: Atlantic Metropolis (NJ) Air Present

August 24/25: Rochester (NY) Worldwide Air Present

August 31-Sept. 2: Cleveland (OH) Nationwide Air Present

September 7/8: Grissom Air Reserve Base (IN) Air Present

September 14/15: Reno, Nevada Nationwide Championship Air Races

September 21/22: Naval Air Station Oceana (VA) Air Present

September 28/29: Robins AFB (GA) Air Present

October 5/6: San Juan, Puerto Rico Worldwide Air Present

October 12/13: Hampton, Georgia Atlanta Air Present

October 19/20: Wings Over Houston (TX) Air Present

October 26/27: Sheppard AFB (TX) Air Present

November 2/3: Punta Gorda, Florida Worldwide Air Present

November 15-17: Nellis AFB, Nevada Aviation Nation