Yesterday, Des 23rd, it was time to give the Christmas Holiday a flying start in our local area.
We had six GA-planes and that was enough to form a nice formation.
Among them was a RV-4 and my own -7.
The background: for years, the Norwegian Air Force used to fly a Christmas formation, mostly shaped like a star.
They took off from their bases and flew a sortie over the nearby cities.
This tradition has been cut back during the later years due to cost, so this year a group of pilots on my local airport Rygge (ENRY) decided it was time to pick up the tradition.
Four of the pilots where X Airforce, and two where very skilled civilian formation pilots.
First the brief:
Then the "obligatory" pre-start pic:
Then it was time to taxi out and enter the rwy:
Ready for takeoff:
Joined up after T/O:
Due to the dissimilar aircrafts, we had decided not to fly in the normal close formation, so we had set the references a little looser.
I was flying as #6, and in addition to be #6, I had the role as spotter and also photoship.
Here a pic from my position in the formation:
We where flying at 1500' AGL, and the winds where beetween 15 and 25 kts at that altutude. It was a bumpy ride and it took plenty of work to stay in formation.
Note that # 5, the Lancair, is flying with T/O flaps.
We flew 105 KIAS. That was the fastest the lead plane (a Czech Sport PS28 Cruiser) could do, so the fast Lanc had to "cheat" alittle to stay in the formation.
After flying over the 5 biggest cities in the local area, it was time for the overhead break.
Here we are inbound from the IP:
Lead on the break:
Then # 2:
Soon we where all safely on the ground and we all agreed to do it again next year.
Beforehand, we had called a couple of the local newpapers in the towns we passed and here are a couple of videos which two papers put up on their internet-editions within an hour after our flyby:
PS: there might be a stupid commercial before the video. If so; sorry about that! ( I HATE commercials...!)
Since this was a Christmas star flown with only six planes (the ideal is seven or more), the formation also looked like a Cross, so that was a nice symbolic thing during these holydays...