|March 24th, 2012|
Following two fatal accidents during the 2011 air show season and the unexpected departure of the team’s first female pilot earlier this month, Squadron Leader Jim Turner, team lead for Great Britain’s Royal Air Force (RAF) Red Arrows, announced via a written statement on the team’s website that the team would perform with seven aircraft – rather than their normal nine – throughout the 2012 season.
“The last few months have been the hardest that the team have endured for a long time, however; in true RAF spirit and ethos, we are determined to put the recent tragedies behind us and move forward to promote our reputation as one of the finest, most professional and safest military display teams in the world,” said Turner. “The whole team joins me in thanking, from the bottom of our hearts, the general public and our fellow Service men and women for their continued support throughout this most difficult period.”
The Red Arrows depart today (March 15) for the Mediterranean island of Cyprus for the final phase of their winter training.