Picture of the week # 9 - USAF Heritage Flights.
The United States Air Force Heritage Flight was created in 1997 to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the United States Air Force. It incorporates fighters from World War II, the Vietnam War, the Korean War and other conflicts in which the USAF has been involved.
The USAF Heritage Flight formation normally consist of two or more aircraft representing the different eras of operations, making three passes past the spectators and then a final pass from behind the crowd with the aircraft performing a separation maneuver to create separation between the aircraft followed a few seconds later by a single simultaneous aileron roll by all the aircraft in the flight.
During the flypasts there is a musical accompaniment played through the public address system. The music that is normally played is “God bless America” from Lee Greenwood.
After the roll maneuver each of the aircraft will then enter the airfield traffic pattern, typically performing an individual pass before the crowd and then "pitching out" into an approach pattern and landing.
As of 2016, Air Combat Command lists the aircraft for Heritage Flights of three military A/C as F-35 Lightning II, F-22 Raptor, A-10 Thunderbolt II and F-16 Fighting Falcon. Operational F-4 Phantoms discontinued participation in Heritage Flights after the type's retirement from the United States Air Force in the late 1990s. However the QF-4E Target Drone variant of the F-4 still participate in Heritage Flights.
Civilian owned warbirds as P-51 Mustang, P-38 Lightning, P-40 Warhawk, P-47 Thunderbolt, A-1 Skyraider, F-86 Sabre are the warbirds who undergo a secure and intensive check of pilots and planes before they are allowed to be part of the Heritage Flights.
Due to the success of USAF Heritage Flights, US Navy also started with some US Navy Heritage Flights, but that those pictures are for one of the next “Pictures of the week”
Picture taken with CANON EOS D1 Mk II with 300mm f2.8 lens.