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Cotswold Airshow 2010

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As usual, this years Cotswold Air Show (previously known as the Kemble Air Show) was staged over the fathers day weekend. I arrived on Sunday morning with the weather feeling a bit nippy. As the morning progressed, so did the sunshine.

It was nice to see 3 Williams F1 cars supporting the show on static display. The show was also supported by the normal inclusion of a variety of radio controlled models.

 

The show kicked of with a well rehearsed display
by 2 RC aircraft. Both planes were 1/6th scale jets. The second model was a hawk painted in 100 sqn colours.

This model looked stunning and the attention to detail was inspiring. Once the RC aircraft had departed the runway, the real aircraft started their displays.

This started in the form of the Canberra based at Kemble. Unfortunately she is restricted to fast taxi runs only, but it was nice to see a couple of fast runs up and down the huge runway at Kemble.

Air Atlantique are hoping that next year will see their Canberra on the display circuit having hopefully found the required engines from the
States.

Next up was a very familiar site over the Kemble skies. Kemble is seen as the red arrows birthplace, being they were stationed there when they were first formed.

Due to a rare accident, in which 1 pilot had to eject, the reds were a little behind schedule. Having drafted in another pilot to take over,they are now up to full strength. As usual the display was of very high standards and the reds took full advantage of the perfect weather.

Next up was the vampire preservation groups Vampire. This performed a nice slow dirty pass followed by a series of fast passes. I personally thought the display was a bit short. The Tucano followed the Vampire. For this season the Tucano display aircraft have been painted in camo colours for this
years 70th anniversary of the Battle Of Britain. It opened with a nice quarter clover manouvre followed by some nice slow passes. I really enjoyed this display and thought the maximum radius turns were great. All credit goes to Ft LTN Tom bould. After this followed the second jet display in the form of 4 Jet Provosts. On the break the Typhoon snuck in for a fast pass before landing, while the red Arrows departed for another of there four trips that day.


After the break, it was great to see another classic aircraft in the shape of a Shorts Skyvan. This was the jump ship for the renegade parachute display team. This climbed to 6000ft before releasing the parachutists. It is notable that the renegades are the only civilian parachute team on the display circuit at the moment. Brendan O Brian followed the renegades with what I (and my 6 year old son), thought to be one of the highlights of the show. Brendan o Brian needs no introduction on the display circuit. His crazy antics are renowned. For this display he decided that he would fly his short winged piper cub, not only like a crazed mad man, but then land on top of a moving trailer!!! Brendans skills surely know no bounds!! With a difficult crosswind he did manage to touch down on the trailer but didn’t quite get locked into the brackets. He is 1 of only 3 pilots worldwide to be able to do this ‘stunt’.

I thought the next section of the show was quite well done. Air Atlantiques Dragon rapide took off to start its display. This machine was once owned by Foxes glacier Mints and was used to ferry executives around.

Over the tannoy then appeared the sound of an air raid siren and the airfield came under attack from a lone Messerschmitt ME 108. It took a little too long to get the Hurricanes off the ground but they were soon on the tail of the ‘hun’.

While this went on, there were explosions happening on the airfield. The sound of gunfire also rang over the tannoy. The Hurricanes eventually saw off the 108 which was left trailing smoke.A nice dimension to the show I thought. We need more pyros at air shows!!

The hurricanes then proceeded onto their own display, which was well executed and what I would call ‘flowing’. Next was another aircraft from the Hawker stable, the Hunter.

Another one of my own favourite teams displayed at Kemble this year. Team Viper use strikemasters and are named after the engines they use in the aircraft. The formation flying by the team was once again spot on.

Another highlight for me was the appearance of Kennet aviations Seafire. This performed a ‘graceful display and was a real treat.

With the weather still lovely more acts such as the black cats, home team ultimate high and the swift and twister team did they’re displays. A great display was also done by DC3 Drag em oot. The display was nearly finished when the Typhoon displayed.

I really felt this was a bit lacklustre. For some
reason the display looked a little flat and lacked the normal ‘aggression’ of other typhoon displays.

That said once it had finished, all that remained were the Yakovlevs to end the show. Unfortunately once the typhoon had finished, there seemed a mass exodus of Kemble airfield and the Yakovlevs superb mixture of aerobatics, seemed to be falling on an ever dwindling crowd. Overall this years Cotswold air display was, I thought great value for money.


There was a nice mix of classic jets that you associate with Kemble, Modern military, warbird and aerobatic display teams, plus helicopters and civil aircraft. You could say there was something for everyone. Roll on Cotswold 2011!!!!

Review by Neil Darby - click HERE for Neil's Showcase