Yesterday was our annual trip up to Seaburn for the Sunderland International Airshow. We got there really early (a little too early) and set ourselves up on the seafront so we could get decent seats. I have to admit I was a little disappointed with the flying program this year. There were no fast-jets, and the only RAF representation was the Grob Tutor. Although it does a great display, it was a shame there were no Red Arrows, or even the solo display Hawk.
That being said, although I was disappointed with the flying program, there was definitely no disappointment from what was actually there. The show was opened by the Falcons, who gave a brilliant display, as always. The best thing about the Falcons at Sunderland is that they land on the beach right in front of you, so when they are coming in to land they fly directly overhead. I was amazed that they could keep the stack straight, as it was really, really windy! I took my camera with me, but I didn’t hire a lens like I did for Waddington, so the only pictures I took were of the Falcons.
Although I love the blades, and they had an amazing display, the most breathtaking display was from The Matadors. The two pilots are Paul Bonhomme and Steve Jones, who have been flying together for 14 years. If you’ve ever watched the Red Bull Air Race, you will recognise the names, and the display was just how I expected. Lots of cross overs and extremely close flying made for a breathtaking display.
The show was closed by the Vulcan, which is very quickly becoming my favourite plane. By the time it displayed, the tide was getting very high so the beach was emptying rapidly, but almost everyone stood up on the beachfront was stopped still watching it. So graceful for such a huge plane, but blooming noisy when it wants to be, I hope they meet their donation targets to continue flying next year for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
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