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Middelburg Airweek & Airshow 2019

Middelburg Airshow 2019

The smell of Avgas, Mogas and Jet A1 filled the skies over Middelburg this past weekend with the first of two Mpumalanga Airshows to take place this year. The 2019 Middelburg Airshow returned this year after the planning phase taking place last year with the absence of the show. This year the organisers put together a major show with the Aero Club of South Africa having their Airweek and the highly anticipated Airshow.

Our team arrived at Middelburg on Thursday the 7th March, thanks to our aviation family Airshow friends “Just Love Mission” Little Annie the sole surving Antonov two on the Airshow circuit. We were extremely honored to be invited days before the show by Richard and Irene Lovett, organisers of past present and now future airshows at Middelburg Airfield. Our media liaison officer Mark Mansfield organized all our accommodation, once again treated to the hospitality of the Lovett Family. Mark also kept us up to date before and after the show with all necessary news updates.

Friday evening, we were treated to some early evening flying from Riaan Prinsloo, Ivan Van der Schaar and Juba Joubert in a Yak18T, Boeing Stearman and an Aerospatiale Gazelle in formation.

The Grasslands based Misasa Aerial Display Team-MAD microlights showed off their Led lights in close formation.

A number of aircraft flew in between Thursday and Saturday of the event.

Saturday morning the now exciting Speed Rally took place with some of the SAPFA members flying the speed navigation rally, which is similar to the fun rally’s we usually attend. Except that the rally is given a pre-determined handicap speed, based on a selected power setting to each aircraft.
Read more here on the Speed Rally

On show day, Hot Air balloons filled the morning sky above Middelburg. While some of the participating show aircraft made their way in from neighboring Gauteng airports and elsewhere.

A new plan at some of the airshows in South Africa this year is to have an afternoon show instead of the entire day having a full program with many repeats. This show had no repeats and a full program with no gaps in between.
A cavalcade of Trucks opened the show with Juba Joubert flying the Alouettes II above the line of trucks while Capital Sounds provided as always, the vibe to the Airshow circuits thanks to Brian Emmenis and his great team who put together sound and information on each act in the slot of the event.

The first of the processdings began with an Atlas Angel formally an Ex South Africa Airforce (SAAF) Kudu, used as a jump ship for the “Skydive Tandem Johannesburg” Delmas based parachute members and other members from neighboring parachute clubs.

Menno Parsons made a welcome back display in his P51 Mustang Sally, as the P51 had to have a major engine overhaul and was absent from airshows for a year. It was also a first to have a P51D at Middelburg Airshow.

The Just Love Mission Antonov 2 “Little Annie” with Jon-Marc Hill and Col Keith “Fulcrum” Fryer flew a fantastic display in the world’s biggest piston bi-plane. “Little Annie also raced a truck and decided to drop a number of marshmallows over the crowds of Middelburg. They’re surely know how to sweeten things up!

The Puma Flying Lions led by Scully Levin, Arnie Menageli and Sean Thakwray flew a three-ship display with the roar of the T6 Harvard. The Cows Pitts Specials had a synchro display with two aircraft displaying the colors of a good cause to the masses.
Captain Flippie Vermulen brought his Springbok Classic Air Beech 18, and showed off the classic early day propliner.

Dennis Spence had his team of the Goodyear Eagles with a full four ship display of all his Pitts S2Bs flown by Glen “Gringo” Warden, Nigel Hopkins, Johan Von Solms and Jason Beamish.

Nigel and Jason also flew the high energy aerobatic display of Team Extreme with Jason Beamish showing off his brand new Extra 330 at its first of many airshows to come. Pierre Gouws led the Raptor RVs with Nigel Hopkins, Trevor Warner and Ryan Beaton.

The main attraction of airshows has to always be the jets, this year we got to see Richard Lovetts L39ZU-IBN, David Laas Impala Mk1 ZU-IMP and Rand Airport based L29 ZU-AUX.

A new display was the hostage scenario where an Atlas Angel was taken hostage from terrorists and an Aerospatiale Gazelle came to the rescue with members of armed reaction forces. Juba Joubert also flew a solo display in an Aerospatiale Gazelle, his routine is very similar to some of the world’s present attack helicopter routines worldwide.


A gyrocopter and 2 Bathawks were put through their paces adding flavor to the ultralight aircraft on display.

The flying phase of the show was ended by a formation of the Puma Flying Lions led by the Springbok Classic Air Beech 18. A hot air balloon and fireworks ended the show, where all invited guests moved into the Lovetts Hanger for Gala evening and Price giving for the Speed Rally. The most scrumptious supper was awarded to us and many others. To all the sponsors, who made the show possible we thank you.

E:\Dropbox\Rob's Aerie & Workshop Album\Rob and the big aeries\Rob and the big aeries 2019\Middelburg\2019-03-08 19.24.17.jpg

But to the Middelburg Aero Club and to Irene and Richard Lovett we congratulate you on a fantastic event you have once again pulled off. Us as a team get highly emotional as your hospitality, your organization and there is so much more we can say. You guys are the best of the best. We thank you, we cannot wait for Aero Club 100 next year once again to be held at Middelburg Airfield. At what we have been told, it’s going to be massive.

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Africa Aerospace and Defence Airshow 2018

Africa Aerospace and Defence Airshow 2018

The 10th edition of the Africa Aerospace and Defence trade and airshow has come and gone, what was definitely the most exciting show we all looked forward to panned out to be a great success once again. The event took place over the 19th-23 September 2018 at Air force Base Waterkloof, Centurion, City of Tshwane.

AAD2018 Crowd

Static Park

The apron was full of aircraft and most of the hangers were full of all different companies showing off their technology to the world. The crowds were kept busy with all the walking through the halls and interacting with aircraft and pilots.

Crowds flocked to the gates around the base from the 22-23 September to get the best seat along the crowd line,this to insure they don’t miss any part of the exiting program Colonel Keith Fryer(flight director)  and Keith Andrews and their team put together to excite and show off air capabilities of the South African Airforce (SAAF). The Saturday show started off with the Sound of Freedom, that been the sound of jets, six Gripens from 2 Squadron and 3 Hawks from 85 Combat Flying School took to the skies and put a formation flypast over the crowds.What a way to start a airshow!

AAD2018 Crowd

With Airforce Base Swartkop down the road from Airforce Base Waterkloof, Swartkop was used as a second base for aircraft including the new microlight display team known as the Misasa Aerial Display-MAD Team. The team is made up of Adrienne Visser as lead, Pieter Kriel at the number two, Gary Heyenreich at number three, Gavin Van Der Berg at four and number five Marius Nel. It was great to see a microlight display team after the absence at airshows for some years now,we hope to see them on the regular airshow circuit in the future. There was a Airplane Factory Sling 4 and a Raven 500 formation Flypast.A mass Bathawk display was put on show, and is shown why its a great aircraft for Anti-Poaching missions.A light sky jeep was also thrown into the formation as well as the wagtail gyrocopter, all aircraft not shy to the African bush!

Raven 500

Wagtail

Capital Sounds once again had their ever hard working team at the event and this has to be the longest line of speakers that Capital has at a airshow in South Africa. Brian Emmenis and Leon Du Plessis informed the crowd of each aircraft taking to the skies and brought a lot of the airshow vibe to Waterkloof.

Capital Sounds Team AAD2018

Capital Sounds

Lieutenant colonel Craig “Shark” Lesson once again did 85 Combat Flying School proud,as he put the Hawk Mk120 through its paces.The Officer Commanding 85 Combat Flying School displayed both one of the Flag Hawks’271′ and one of the grey aircraft during the course of AAD2018.Andrew Blackwood Murray flew his Nashua Extra 300 and Neville Ferriria flew his Slick 540 with a combined aerobatic sequence with high energy aerobatics and low knife edge passes so the crowd could capture the sleek lines on both aircraft. Neville Ferreria had just returned from Hungry where he is flying the Geneavation Aerobatic aircraft for the country. He is surely doing South Africa proud!

Hawk MK120 ‘Vlaggie’

Hawk MK120 ‘262’

Andrew Blackwood Murray Extra 300

Slick 540 Neville Ferreira

Paramount Groups AHRLAC aircraft did some tight formation flying and was defiantly a way to show it off to the worlds market of defence. Staying with the locally manufactured aircraft the 16 Squadron Rooivalk was put through its paces in the UN white livery by Major Paul ‘Raccoon’ Kempthorn, at the end of his display he released a large amount of flares,a great end to a display!

Paramount Group AHRLACs

Paramount Group AHRLACs

16 Squadron Rooivalk

16 Squadron Rooivalk

The Rand Airport based Puma Flying Lions  Harvards and Taillifts Cows Pitts Specials flew their usual display infront of the 45 000+ crowds.The SAAF Museum and Harvard Club Harvards and a single Douglas DC4 did a couple of formation Flypasts over the crowd and brought back many memory’s of the former SAAF trainer before the Harvard was replaced by the Pilatus PC7MKII. The DC4 then went onto doing a solo display flown by Captain Bill Good.

Puma Flying Lions Harvards

Taillifts Cows Aerobatic Pitts Team

Mass Radial Display

Harvard Club

Harvard Club

Douglas DC4

Douglas DC4

The cockpit ambassadors of the South African Airforce The Silver Falcons Aerobatic Team 82,put on a great display led by Major Omphile Matloane who received his Golden Wings  a couple of days before the start of AAD2018.Lt Colonel Glen Wraden flew the Aero L29 from AFB Swartkop, The Airforce of Zimbabwe K8 was also flown with a support CASA 212 on static display.

Silver Falcons

Silver Falcons PC7MKIIs

Falcon 5 Sivu Tangana

L29

L29

K8

K8

There were two mini-wars on the day of the show,both from the SAAF Museum and from the current SAAF inventory of aircraft.A vast amount of pyrotechnics and armored vehicles were used during the show.

SAAF Museum Bosbok and Cessna C185

Ratels

Oryx Helicopters

Top Cover Rooivalk and Hawks

Ivan van Der Schaar and Jon-Marc Hill, Juba Jourbet flew the Bi-plane formation that being a Boeing Stearman and Antonov 2 ‘Little Annie’.Later in the day Little Annie escorted by the Stearman dropped a large amount of Manhattan Marshmellows for the crowds.

AN2 and Boeing Stearman

AN2 ‘Little Annie’

Annie Drop AAD2018

AN2 marshmallow drop

2 Squadron was well represented at the show once again,we were able to see six Gripens in formation,two Gripens in the mini-war and a solo gripen display flown by Major Geoffrey ‘Spartan’ Cooper and a 2v1 combat routine.

2 Squadron Gripens

Gripen JAS39D flown by ‘Midnite’ and ‘Bluebird’

Gripens being flown by ‘Cipher’ and ‘Doberman’

28 Squadron was busy during the mini-war delivering troops into the simulated battle-zone, Lt Col Clint Hawtrey also gave one of the best C130BZ displays to date. What a display it was to witness!

C130BZ

C130BZ dropping flares

C130BZ during the mini-war

A huge of congrats must go to the organisers of AAD2018

Florence Musengi-AAD Chairperson

Simphiwe Hamilton-Excutive Director

Leon Dillman-CEO CAASA

Leona Redelinghuys-Exhibition Director

Marketing and Public Relations-Nakedi Phasha

Youth Development Program-Kholisile Khumalo

General Fabian Zimpande “Zakes” Msimang-Chief of the South African Airforce

The 11th Edition of Africa Aerospace and Defence, AAD2020, will take place 16 – 20 September 2020. 2020 SAAF and the Aero Club of South Africa will be celebrating their centenary birthdays and this creating lots of expectations among young and old to see a Super Show. All we can do is wait and see what they deliver and how many Countries except the invite to join South Africa on this centenary celebrations.

 

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Africa Aerospace and Defence Airshow programme

Africa Aerospace and Defence Airshow programme

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AAD Airshow Programme 22 Sept 2018

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AAD Airshow Programme 23 Sept 2018

 

 

Grand Rand Airshow 2018

Grand Rand Airshow 2018

By Koos Smit

Sunday the morning of the 19th August 2018,The Grand Rand Airshow was ready to entertain the crowds of a pure ‘Jozi’ Airshow with the magnificent backdrop of the Johannesburg central business district.A few clouds were present but it wasn’t long until they were burnt off to make way for the ever eager airshow crowd, with Rand Airshow each year its placed on a Sunday to accommodate more people to enjoy the ever exciting Rand Airshow. This show is also lucky to have most display aircraft based at Rand.

The show was opened by the Queenstown based De Havilland Rapide flown by Captain Flippie Vermulen,he was accompanied by three De havilland Chipmunks with one of the ‘Chippys’ painted with a yellow ‘D-day’ color scheme very similar to the other aircraft in the formation. The Just Love Mission’s AN2 ‘Little Annie’ was tasked to  take the eleven skydivers up to their required height to jump,at the same time their is no room for error as Rand is very close to OR Tambo’s busy airspace. Two chipmunks were then in the display box to continue with their duo display while the AN2 climbed and reported ready for the jump.

Brian Emmenis and his team from Capital sounds added their professionalism to the crowd in providing sound and information on each pilot and aircraft flying on the day of the show.

The mass radial display got airborne with aircraft comprising of Harvards, A T28 Trojan and a Beech 18.Once all the aircraft had joined into formation they flew over head the crowd to show and hear the roar of the mighty radial engine. The Randolph sponsored Boeing Stearman flown by Comair Boeing 737 Captain Ivan van der Schaar brought more gentle aerobatics to the sole surviving Boeing Stearman display on the South African Airshow circuit. The ever popular Puma Flying Lions flew the best display at their home base, they later joined up with four other Harvards to celebrate the 80th Anniversary of the ‘Pilot Maker’. The Harvard flew first on the 1 April 1935 and was retired from the South African  Airforce in 1995.

Henley Air showed off their Helicopter hardware consisting of five Bell 222s flying in close formation, the deep thud could be felt far into the distance from the airport. Menno Parsons flew his Bell 407, he really showed what this chopper can do. He teamed up then with Nigel Hopkins in the Extra 330 and showed both fixed wing and chopper can hover. Team Extreame flew their high energy aerobatics with some aircraft never been seen in that formation.That being Barrie Eeles Extra 330. The T28 Trojan was flown by Jason Beamish and a welcome sight to have a T28 flying at an Airshow for the first time this year.Patrick Davidson flew his Red Bull Sbach which he flew up all the way from Port Elizabeth.

Elton Bondi flew Andrew Blackwood Murray’s  Nashua Branded Extra 300, he joined up with Barrie Eles in Blue Extra 330The Goodyear Eagles with their Pitts S2Bs and the Taillifts flying Cows added to the ironic Pitts displays on the day. Veteran Airshow pilot Glen Wraden showed off the only jet action apart from the 737, The L29 showed off the sleek lines of the early soviet era jet trainer. The Mango 737-800 flown by Captain Rodney Chinn flew tight in the busy airspace around. Great to see the ‘Heavies’ displaying at airshows. Team Rv flew their four-ship Rv display while the Gyro-copter added variety to the show flown by Matthew Zwolinski.

 

 

Air Total Newcastle Airshow 2018

The 8th annual Newcastle Airshow, the only show in Kwazulu-Natal took place on the 2 June 2018 at the Newcastle Airport on the outskirts of the town of Newcastle. With this show being the only show on the circuit in KZN, members of the public traveled far and wide to the norther KZN town of Newcastle to witness the ever vibrant Airshow.  This years theme was ‘Give your dreams some Wings’.

Show day saw some early morning mist around the skies of Newcastle,but didn’t last long due to the sun creeping  through the hills in the distance,some early morning arrivals from display aircraft from Gauteng and other parts of the country was a welcome sight like every other airshow as the excitement cannot be hidden before the start of an Airshow.An Aviation Career expo was held in the morning before the days proceedings took place.Other talks from pilots took place during the day.


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The show started with a Para drop from SANDF and Golden Eagles parachutists from a 15 Squadron Oryx helicopter flown by Altaaf Sheik, Warren Jobe and flight engineer Lazola Vumazonke,once the last skydiver had landed safely the Oryx crew then began giving flips to the youth who have never flown in a aircraft ever.The Aerobatics Unlimited L29 ZU-AUX flown by Glen’Gringo’ Warden showed off the eastern block aircraft the to crowds who love seeing a jet in the sky especially in Newcastle.Major Lee-Roy ‘Shinobi’ Goosen and Lt Col Johannes ‘Boerboel ‘Mashaba flew the JAS39D Gripen all the way from Air force Base Makhado in the Limpopo province ,this was the 2nd time the Gripen has flown at Newcastle,the last time was in 2012.The frontline fighter was put through its paces before its final maneuver ,a ‘Upper Charlie’ and disappearing into the blue sky.Major Lone Nel was the GLO for the SAAF Aircraft.

 


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Major Diaan Grobbelaar put the 15 Squadron A109LUH through its paces,one of the great A109 displays one can see at an airshow these days. The Silver Falcons Team 82 with the leadership of Major Omphile Matloane,  flew the first official airshow display as team 82 flying out of the Central Flying School of AFB Langebaanweg along the Capes West Coast. Other team member’s consists of Major Bheki Shabangu at the number 2,Major Corne van Deventer and the soloist Major Sivu Tangana. It was great to see how hard the ground crew for the Silver Falcons, they’re  are the ones who keep the aircraft maintained at all time. A big salute to all of them!

Radials that were present on the day was Menno Parsons Dc3 flown by Derek Hopkins,a first to see a DC3 at the Newcastle Airshow.The Puma flying Lions flying the T6 Harvard’s led by Captain Scully Levin. Ivan van der Schaar flew his Randolph sponsored Boeing Stearman.

Brian Emmenis from Capital Sounds provided the sound for this Airshow once again.commentary for the day was professional provided by Leon Du Plessis and Brian Emmenis, keeping the public informed of all the aircraft and pilots during the course of the day, and always bringing the vibe to the airshow and getting the public excited for each act during the display slots.


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South Africa’s top aerobatic pilots from the likes of Patrick Davidson flew all the way in from Port Alfred in his RedBull sponsored Sbach 342,a first at Newcastle to have him display at this particular show.He will soon get ready for his next Redbull Air Race series in Russia in August this year. Team Extreme  two member’s, Nigel Hopkins flying his Extra330 and Mark’Buggs’Hensman flying Mark Sampson’s yellow Sbach in high energy aerobatic sequences. The Goodyear Eagles Pitts Team flew their three ship display routine under the leadership of Glen Warden, Nigel Hopkins and Jason Beamish flying the other two Pitts.

Neville Ferreira flew his newly painted Slick 540 from Kitty Hawk aerodrome to the East of Pretoria, He then raced a AMG Mercedes later in the day. Matthew Zalewski flew the Magni Gyrocopter, becoming one of the best and only Gyrocopter displays to watch at airshows.


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A big well done to the organizer of this years Newcastle Airshow, from the entire Airshow Committee and Johan Pieters and Christo van der Vyver from Champ Marketing. Johan Neilon, Pete Graham and the ATCs kept the show safe and on time.To all the emergency services that were on standby during the whole day if any incidents had to occur. Thanks to Charlie Hugo for organising the media accreditation and to Capital Sounds for providing commentary and sound during the show, to the South African Air force providing aircraft and promoting and restoring National pride to our country.To all the stakeholders who sponsored the show, this last paragraph is all for the unsung hero’s mentioned above he make these country Airshows possible.We look forward to the 9th edition of the Newcastle Airshow next year.

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Wesbank Botswana International Airshow 2018

The 2018 Botswana International Airshow held at the Matsieng Airfield a few kilometers outside of Gaborone. We arrived the Friday afternoon an allocated to our tents,all thanks to the Matsieng Flying Club, The theme this year was ‘Wings of fire and wheels of fury’ held over the weekend of the 26th May.

Wesbank Botswana international airshow + Fly-in and camping was a sell-out event this year. 311 guys and gals flew in to Matsieng aerodrome for the weekend. They made use of 128 rented tents and 41 provided own tents for the weekend, this brining a record 169 tents. Some people made use of the Town Lodge in Gaborone.

The Friday and Saturday evening was festive with an excellent band proving entertainment both evenings, Fly in pilots, Display Pilots and crew all braai’ing or getting a burger / steak from the mobile spur that was setup. We can recommend those that can fly in or drive in to attend the 2018 event and social with all other pilots and display pilots plus attend an amazing and adrenaline packed airshow.


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With this airshows,some things were abit different,one had the option to camp over at the airfield where the show was to take place. Not many shows on the African contitnent you can camp over at an Airshow but Matsieng you can. The show at Matsieng Airfield has now been goping since the first show started at the field  back in 2012. The Matsieng Flying Club really went all out for this year show, making sure all the pilots and other visitors were looked after and made sure their stay was comfortable in every way. We were treated to a live band on both Friday and Saturday night with the many bond fires that kept us warm during the average winter evening.We were then welcomed the next morning with perfect airshow weather and some of the crowds eagerly wanting to get a front row seat. The two safety directors for the day was Chris Briers and Col.Francois ‘Hosepipe’ Hanekom which made the show flow smoothly during the course of the day.

 

 

The show opened by a free fall of skydivers,with their jump-ship a PAC750 flown by Darius Briers,followed after that a two-ship display by the Goodyear Eagles in their Pitts S2Bs flown by Dennis Spence and Larry Beamish. Glen ‘Gringo’ Warden flew the L29 Delphin in its stricking Tiger scheme.Andrew Blackwood Murray flew his Nashua Extra 300LP and Neville Ferreria flew his Kitty Hawk based Slick 540 in his high energy aerobatic sequence.Later in the day Neville and Andrew joined up for a formation pass both in the Extra and in the Slick. Matthew Zalewski put two different Magni Gyros through their paces during the course of the day.The Bathawk flew a great display and showed why its a great asset to combating poaching in Southern Africa.The Raptors Rvs made a welcome return flying RV7s flown by Pierre Gouws,Larry Beamish and Ryan Beaton.


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The welcome appersnce of ex Presidnet Ian Khama  and memebrs of the Matsieng Flying Club handed over Charity Cheques to the lady Khama Trust,The Motswedi Rehabilitation Centre,The Masire Foundation and the Movhudi Centre for the Blind.Brian Emmenis from Capital Sounds provided the long speaker line so spectators coyuld get all thr information about aircraft and pilots displaying on the day,assisted by the Capitals sound crew and Leon Du Plessis and Keith Fryer adding to the commentary team for the day!

Menno Parsons made a great appearance with his Bell 407 and his Pilatus PC12,which made up for the absence of the P51 Mustang.The mighty Bell 430 flown by Alister Brown really gave a real thump on his passes and showed the VIP helicopter to its full capability.Other helicopter action saw the Brakpan Airfield based Alouette II and III flown by Rob Osner and Juba Jourbert. True North Aviation saw a three-ship of Citabria aircraft flying gentle aerobatics,the Matsieng Flying Club preformed a formation flypast from two Cessna 210s,a Cirrus SR22 and King Air C90.A solo display from both the Cessna 210 and King Air was a real delight.The Air tractor also part of True North Aviation also did a display of low level passes while dropping water in front of the crowds.

The An2 ‘Little Annie’ was displayed by Jon-Marc Hill and South African Air force Airshow  Air Boss Col.Keith ‘Fulcrum’ Fryer.The day before they treated some pupil from some schools around the vicinity of Botswana in a flight in Little Annie,and did they enjoy it!

The Randolph Boeing Stearman flown by Ivan van der Schaar also showed off the gentles aerobatics of the aircraft and the beautiful sound of the Radial.Conrad Botha flew his slick 360 and becoming a great aircraft to watch at airshows after an absence for some time

Cliff Lotter flew in  his Klerksdorp based Rv7,he then joined up with Marin Venn in his RV7.Neville Ferreira flew Jonty Essers Kitty Hawk based Yak 52 adding some russian flavour of aircraft to the program.


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The Puma flying Lions led by Captain Scully Levin performed their usual display routine and taking part in a fly-by with a big wall of fire,having most of the crowd on their feet and heart beats been raised.

 

The Puma Flying Lions then closed the show off with their spectacular night display,once again another successful airshow from the Matsieng Flying club,well done to all involved and we look forward to seeing the team again next year!

The mini Oshkosh of Southern Africa,if you love airshows come to Matsieng next year”Jarryd Sinovich

“What an amazing show, the guys from Matsieng has once again showed what an Airshow should be like. To the Airshow team, Camping team and Media Boss, Well-done to you all. See you at the 2019 Matsieng Airshow and Fly In” Flippie van Emmenis


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Please browse through our Gallery for more pictures from the show:

Mercedes-Benz Club Day at Brakpan Airfield

Mercedes-Benz Club Day at Brakpan Airfield

horseless carriage

Horseless carriage

The first car that ever-set wheel on South-African soil was a Benz Velo.
Although the “horseless carriage”, which had been imported by a local businessman, John Percy Hess, arrived in SA at the end of 1896, it did not run under its own power until January 4 of the following year. This was due to the fact that there was a delay of a month in the arrival of the benzene fuel for the engine! The first public demonstration of the Benz Velo took place at the Berea Park sports ground in Pretoria in front of Paul Kruger, the President of the Transvaal Republic. The publicity blurb urging Pretorians to attend this “red letter day” event proclaimed that “the motor car, like the bicycle, has come to stay and will be the craze of the century.”
Hess went on to become the sole agent for the Benz brand in South Africa. The car was subsequently driven in Johannesburg as part of his initiative to promote “a revolution in locomotion.”

The Mercedes-Benz club convoyed to the East of Johannesburg,to join up with more members owning a Mercedes vehicles and sharing the same passion in the culture of cars that members and some of the public own today from the older class Mercedes to current models.


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Mr Hilton Wolff and some of the other members of the Brakpan Aero club hosted a fun filled day for members of the Mercedes Club of the Gauteng Region as well as some public member’s visiting the airfield on a lazy Sunday. Brakpan Aero Club which was founded in 1953, the  great club house offered  guests refreshments during the day as well as a swim in the clubs swimming pool for the brave hearted people out there as we soon go into the winter weather of the year.

 

Many pilots flew aircraft in to give flips to the public all for free and for a good cause, most passengers who got to fly in aircraft had a great smile for the rest of the day. The busy bees for the day, taking most pax up were Rob Osner in his Alouette III and Father and son team Mark and Jon-Marc hill in Little Annie AN2 and  a Cessna Caravan.Other aircraft we also had the privilege of seeing flying and taking pax was the D-27 Dornier, Yak52, Bosbok, Boeing Stearman, Mushak just to name a few.

By the afternoon the approaching weather scared off most of the public,the ones that stayed on were blessed with beautiful weather as the storm changed direction and missed the airport with thunder showers. By 3HooPm the public were treated to a formation of aircraft that took part in the day.And a flypast by Ivan Van der Schaar in his Randolph sponsored Boeing Stearman.Well done to a great event hosted by the Mercedes Benz club and Mr Hilton Wolff and all other members that took the time and event to make the day a success.

 

Ermelo Airshow 2018

The great Ermelo Airshow has finally returned to the Airshow circuit once again, after an absence since 2011. The show made a welcome return on the 7th April 2018 under the Gert Sibanda Local Municipality. Ermelo is situated 210 kilometers east of Johannesburg. It is both a mixed agriculture and mining region of South Africa.The airfield sits at 5700 feet MSL, pilots took the proper precautions as this was not a usual airfield pilots are used to flying at.

I was fortunate to fly into Ermelo airfield the day before the show with the Hill family in their beautiful strong Russian Antonov An2 “Little Annie” from Wonderboom National Airport in Pretoria.We arrived at the field with full of smiles from organisers and marshals,welcoming us and providing us with some of the best hospitality one can ask for.

That evening we were again treated to a lamb spit braai for all the pilots and VIPs that were invited to the braai.At this point of time the next day would see most display pilots and other aircraft just flying inn for the show.

Apon arrival at the airfield on Saturday the 7th April,we were blessed with beautiful weather for flying.As aircraft after aircraft arrived.The show started off with a parachute drop with SANDF Special Forces ,their jump ship was the An2 “Little Annie”. The An2 was then showed why it is the worlds biggest single engine bi-plane flying in the world today flown by Jon-Marc and Mark Hill.

Ensuring the airshow ran smoothly during the course of the day, safety officers Pete Graham and Trevor Wilson and display directors Kishugu’s Johan Heine was show boss for the day.The Capital Sounds team arrived the Friday before the show to set up for the show, Brian Emmenis and Leon Du Plessis provided excellent commentary and ensuring all information on aircraft and pilots flying on the day.

The Ermelo RC Club was next with two RC aircraft, while Neville Ferreria was soon up after the RC display. His sequence showed part of what the unlimted Aerobatic team level is sitting at. The Magni Gyrocopter flown by Matthew Zalewski from 303 Squadron flying school from Brakpan/Benoni airfield.Johan ‘Juba’ Joubert flew the only helicopter display for the day in the Aerospatiale Gazelle.

The show was a first for Team Extreme made up of Nigel Hopkins, Jason Beamish,Mark ‘Bugs’ Hensman and Mark ‘Sammy’ Sampson. The team flies a range of high performance aerobatic aircraft from the Extra 330, MX2 and Sbach 341. Two aircraft were ferried up from Cape Town just for the show. Andrew Blackwood Murray flew his Nashua sponsored Extra 300 in two spirited displays during the day.

The Rand Airport based team including the Puma Flying Lions T6 Harvard’s led by veteran airshow pilot Scully Levin who still flies for Mango airlines. He also led the new Cows Aerobatic team sponsored by ‘Taillifts SA’ flying the Pitts Specials who were sponsored by Torre for some years. The Goodyear Eagles put a 3ship display,also flying the Pitts Special led by former fighter pilot Glen ‘Gringo’ Warden. The team is also made up of Paul ‘Cruiser’ Coetzer former 85 Combat Flying School Impala display pilot. And lastly Johan von Solms a former Cheetah pilot. Glen Warden also flew the solo L39 ‘ZUTEE’ display and later paired up with Richard Lovett in his L39 ZU-IBN which both L39s are almost identical.

Ivan van der Schaar flew is beautiful Boeing Stearman with gentle aerobatics and also flew his stearman into a immaculate sunset at the end of the day. Denel test pilot Mike Weingartz flew David Laas Impala ZU-IMP, Mike has the highest hours on the type in the world. The kishugu AT802 demostarted simulated fire bombing just as the sun set.

The South African Air force provided an Agusta A109LUH from 19 Squadron AFB Hoedspruit which was on static display. The 2 Squadron JAS39D Gripen flew all the way from AFB Makhado to provide a mini display. The Gripen was flown by Mohau ‘Doberman’ Vundla, this was his first airshow display and in the back seat Marc ‘Bluebird’ Wilson.

The show was tasked by Andre Van Rooyen who had support from most of the members from the Ermelo Aeronautical Society and the support of the sponsoring of the show from FAW Trucks Ermelo. We hope to see the Ermelo Airshow as a regular on the airshow circuit.

 

The next Airshow on the calendar in South Africa is the SAAF Museum Airshow 2018