The Aero Experience is a celebration of Midwest aviation and aerospace achievement. We invite you to join us as we explore the treasures of Midwest aviation through first-hand experiences. Our contributors take turns flying lead, and we are always looking for new destinations. Check in with The Aero Experience frequently to see where we will land today, and then go out and have your own aero experiences!
Carmelo Turdo, Mark Nankivil and Fred Harl - The Aero Experience Team
Thursday, April 24, 2014
Thunder Over Louisville: Jets - Flash Gordon L-39C and USAF F-22A Raptor
By Carmelo Turdo
By Leo Cachat
The Aero Experience coverage of Thunder Over Louisville continues with a look at more jets! The 1983 L-39C flown by Jay "Flash" Gordon made some fairly conservative, medium-level passes featuring some barrel rolls and inverted flight. Gordon represents the cadre of civilian tactical jet pilots who came to the rescue of airshows in 2013 during the sequester period for military jet teams, and it is great to see him participate in this year's event. Also flying in the Friday practice session was the USAF F-22A Raptor back in action this year. This flight demonstration was a lesson in the advances made in aerodynamics and propulsion over the decades, and one must actually see it in person to appreciate the flying capabilities of the Raptor. The performance appeared to be in slow-motion as the fighter effortlessly completed tight loops and reversals, including a brief flat spin and crisp recovery. Also included are some shots of the Heritage Flight with two P-51D Mustangs. We hope you enjoy the photos and find some occasion to see these jets in person at the next opportunity.