Swiss pilots to fly at Sunderland Airshow

The first team has signed up to take to the skies as part of the Sunderland Airshow.

Tuesday, 15th January 2019, 3:17 pm
Updated Wednesday, 16th January 2019, 6:38 pm
Planes take to the skies in the Sunderland Airshow.

It might be cold now, but plans are already underway for one of the city’s biggest annual summer events.

And, the first team of flying display groups for the three-day event has been announced.

Coun John Kelly, Sunderland City Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Culture, welcomed the news.

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He said: “We’re delighted to confirm the first flight on the programme for this year’s Sunderland Airshow, and look forward to seeing the Swiss Air Force PC-7 Team performing in the skies above our seafront for the very first time.

“Over the coming weeks and months we’ll be able to announce more attractions, as we continue to work hard to bring some of the world’s finest pilots and aircraft to this hugely popular annual event.”

This year, which will be the 31st Sunderland Airshow, the event will take place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, July 26, 27 and 28.

The Swiss Air Force PC-7 Team showcases the high level of training and performance of both the Swiss Armed Forces and the Swiss Air Force by flying dynamic, elegant and precise manoeuvres.

Formation aerobatics performed in propeller planes are highly challenging even for proficient military pilots, so all team members are pilots from the Air Force’s Professional Aviator Corps who normally fly the F/A-18 Hornet.

The daring display flying is their second job and the team enthrals tens of thousands of spectators every year and is highly regarded in their home country and abroad.

The Sunderland Airshow attracts crowds in their thousands to the coastline at Seaburn and Roker.

With high-speed jets, breathtaking display teams and precision flying in the air and a massive choice of activities on the ground, families flock to the action-packed weekend.

The Royal Navy traditionally has a warship off the coast and there is also a large firework display.