UPDATED 07.02 - Flying Legends retrospective - *1997*

Re: UPDATED 07.02 - Flying Legends retrospective - *1997*

Postby DaveBr on Wed 12 Feb 2020, 3:03 pm


Again, on the B-25 I will have picked up that designation from a Flying Legends programme. I have 2004 in front of me on the desk now and that's how it's listed there.

(I see on its current official web site:
https://kluhv.nl/home-eng/nieuws/de-vli ... -mitchell/
it is listed as both a B-25N and then at the bottom of the page a B-25J ... :dizzy: )

Re: UPDATED 07.02 - Flying Legends retrospective - *1997*

Postby Archer on Thu 13 Feb 2020, 8:43 pm

These things can get complex. As the aircraft still has the Hayes-modified engine installations, along with some other small changes, I'd say that B-25N is the best fit. On the other hand, it was flown to represent a B-25J but is currently in the colours of a B-25D, so take your pick. It was originally built as part of a batch of B-25J-20/22-NC Mitchells, so that's where that build lot number came from.

Back to Legends! :wink:

(edited, forgot that it currently represents a different model)
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Re: UPDATED 07.02 - Flying Legends retrospective - *1997*

Postby DaveBr on Wed 04 Mar 2020, 7:44 am

I have moved on to 1998. I don't have any personal recollections - you'll have to wait until 2002 for those so I have, again, been watching the official video. This is one from the 'Red Admiral Years' so leaves something to be desired on the production front, but let's brush over that...

The French were back in 1998 after an enforced absence in 1997 apparently due to some disagreement between the French and British authorities over portability of certification. We touched on this in the 1997 discussion and it is covered extensively in the 1998 video.

A strong lineup again, with over 30 aircraft in the Balbo (I counted 31 plus Joker, video commentary claims 34). I was particularly struck by the strength of the Naval contingent - 4 Grumman Cats, 3 Corsairs, 3 Skyraiders, 2 Fury/Sea Furies, 2 Avengers, 2 Swordfish(!).

Notable individual items were the MATS Connie (operating from Cranfield for the weekend), 3 Lysanders together and both RNHF Swordfish. How often did this happen away from Yeovilton?

Display sequences were as follows. Keep in mind this is based on the video, which may not necessarily present them in the original order. There might also be items missing - the Grumman Goose is seen on the flightline but not mentioned in the display, for instance.

Spitfire sequence:
9x Spitfires, with the only Legends debutant being HAC's Mk.V BM597, which I believe just missed the previous years show, having it's first post-restoration flight later in July 1997. The video features some fantastic close, low level passes by the pair of Mk.XIVs - SM832 & MV293.

Mercury Flight:
Lysanders x3

Allison Duo:
TFC P-40 & P-63. The P-40 back with TFC again having been exchanged for SM832?

MATS Constellation

USAF segment:

Lancaster, Spit XIX PM631, Hurricane PZ865

Grumman Cats:
All 4 together then
Bearcat/Tigercat and Wildcat/Hellcat pairs

RNHF Swordfish x2

3x Corsair

2x Avenger
including 3 ship formation

3x Skyraiders

Diamond Nine Tigermoths

Hurricanes x2 bounced by OFMC Buchon then tail chase
Hurricane & Hind flypast then Hind solo

Ultimate Pistons:
2x Furies & Bearcat

Believe 6 P-51s (video commentary claims 8, but no evidence for more than 6)

Mustangs remained in the air to join straight to Balbo(?)

31 aircraft + Bearcat Joker
(possibly a couple more if the B-25 and A-26 were trailing behind(?) but I couldn't be sure)

It was notable on the video how close together (and low!) the Balbo segments were as they came through on the breaks to land. Certainly more 'exciting' than today, but I don't think anyone could argue with the need for safety on that one...

I have also been working on the detailed participants spreadsheet, which I'll share in due course. Just need to check and confirm a few things first.

Re: UPDATED 07.02 - Flying Legends retrospective - *1997*

Postby DaveBr on Mon 09 Mar 2020, 9:46 am

1998 Participants list.

I don't have many pilots and not sure of the exact balbo content...




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