Tag Archives: Yak18

“Our Collective Heritage” SAAF Museum Airshow 2019

D-Day for the annual South African Airforce Museum Airshow 2019 had finally arrived at the worlds second oldest operational airbase in the world, Airforce Base Swartkop which is home to the South African Airforce Museum and 17 Squadron a operational helicopter unit also active at the base. The Theme for this years show was “Our Collective Heritage” this is to celebrate and recognise the procurement of our past and present in the SAAF.

Both Umkhonto we Sizwe ( MK ) and Azanian Peoples Liberation Army (AMPLA) sent their pilots abroad to train on aircraft including Cessna 150s and L39s.Helicopter Pilots were sent to Russia for their rotary wings course flying both the MI24 Hind and Mil Mi8 Helicopters.

Former homelands in South Africa known as the TBVC Sates, which were the Transkei, Bophuthatswana, Venda and the Ciskei had their very own Airwings which operated light transport aircraft, helicopter and turbo prop trainers including Pilatus PC7 MKIs just some of the few of their air assets. This was also a perfect occasion to celebrate the theme our collective heritage as mentioned above.

The SAAF Museum Airshow was opened by the Chief of the South African Airforce Lieutenant General Fabian Zimpande “Zakes” Msimang. Who flew in one of the Museum Alouette III, General Msimang a former helicopter pilot mentioned in his speech “The purpose of the Museum Air Show is primarily to celebrate our collective heritage, as well as a build up towards the Aerospace and Defence Expo in September 2020.”

The South African Airforce Band, choreographed some beautiful sets of instrumental music for the opening of the show and kept the public entertained during the course of the day with sights and sounds of military men and women putting together their talent of music.

With the low cloud base in the morning of the show, the Golden Eagles Parachute display team were unfortunate not allowed to jump out of the 44 Squadron Casa 212 based at Airforce Base Waterkloof.

Air boss for this years show was Lieutenant Colonel Rodney King a former leader of the Silver Falcons Aerobatic Display team. Capital Sounds Brian Emmenis had a huge deployment with at least a kilometre of speakers, so that the strong 30 000 plus crowd could hear commentary from both Brian Emmenis, Leon Du Plessis, Colonel Lance “Lancelot” Mathebula,Colonol Catherine “Siren” Constable, Major Dale Naddison,Lieutenant Colonel Iwan Robbertse, Captain Tiisetso “Lego” Legodi and Major Mandisa “Comet” Mfeka.

The Silver Aerobatic Display team opened he show with their flat display with Major Omphile “Biggy” Matloane at the lead. The Museums Helicopter’s were next with a aerial ballet from both the Alouette II and Alouette III.A solo display by the Puma, flown by General John Church.

The First jet display for the day was the Museums Vampire T55 flown by Colonel Glen “Gringo” Warden. Glen also flew the Rand Airport Based L29 and L39 adding to the eastern block jet age.

South African Airforce Displays consisted of a Hawk MK120 flown by Lieutenant Colonel Craig “Shark” Leeson, as he gave his last display as 85 Combat Flying Schools display pilot. Major Rehan “Kaine” Venter will be taking over as the Hawk display pilot. Major Geoffrey “Spartan” Cooper put the Gripen JAS39C through its paces with a flare drop at the end of his display.41 Squadron provide a formation display of a Pilatus PC12 and two Cessna 208A Caravans.17 Squadron provided a Oryx Capability demonstration with fast roping and troop extracting. A combat air routine was also carried out by two Hawk MK120s and a JAS39D Gripen fully loaded with ammunition was surly a favourite to see flying in that configuration.

The South African Airforce Museum put on a mini war re -enactment with two Alouette IIIs, Puma,two Cessna C185s,A Kudu and Bosbok. The Museum and Harvard Club T6 Harvard’s flew a mass radial display with a mass shutdown at the end of their slot.

Team Extreme were also present on the day as they have delighted more than hundreds of thousands of people at airshows in Southern Africa this year already. Other Aerobatic teams that were present were the Goodyear Eagles Pitts, The Cows Pitts Specials and the Puma Flying Lions. The MAD Microlight display team also closed the show with LED lights and smoke added to their trikes.

Singleton displays consisted of a Magni Gyro Copter flown by Andre van Zyl, The Nashua Extra 300 flown by Andrew Blackwood Murry. Menno Parsons made a welcome return to Swartkop this year with his P51D Mustang.The radial formation made up of ‘Little Annie’ an Antonov 2 flown by Jon-Marc and Mark Hill as well as a Boeing Stearman flown by Ivan van der Schaar and Riaan Prinsloo in his Yak 18T.Each of the radials then provided a solo display. The Classic Formation made up of a De Havilland Tiger Moth and two Chipmunks added to the De Havilland Aircraft heritage. Anton von Willich flew a display in his Aerospatiale Gazelle. General Des Barker flew a demo flight in the Wonderboom based Atlas Angel.

As the Gripen closed off the show with a sunset display, ending off with flares into the dark blue skies. Another successful and safe Swartkop Airshow had come to an end. With the short amount of time the SAAF Museum and the SAAF had to pull off a great show with a variety of aircraft on display, a big well done to all involved from Lieutenant General Fabian Zimpande “Zakes” Msimang Chief of the SAAF, Lieutenant Colonel Melvin Bruintjies Officer commanding SAAF Museum, Lieutenant Colonel Trish Schoeman Officer Commanding Airforce Base Swartkop, Lieutenant Colonel Rodney King Flight Director for the show, Major Ntokozo Ntshangase as the media liaison for the SAAF Museum, Capital Sounds and to all display pilots, ground crews ATCs and all other role players behind the scenes that made the show a success.

Until we all meet again at the 2020 SAAF Museum Airshow and celebrate 100 years of the South African Airforce “As the SAAF Museum like to say Keep them up where they’re belong!”

Watch some of the highlights below from this years SAAF Museum Airshow 2019!

https://youtu.be/dN8xcu63kLc

O Incrível Show Aéreo de Maputo – The Amazing Maputo Airshow

It has become abundantly clear that if you have enough willingness, passion and eagerness then all things are possible.  This was the attitude of not only the organizing committee of the 2019 Maputo airshow hosted by the Aeroclub of Mozambique for its 90th anniversary celebrations but also from all the relevant authorities that made the show work.  It was a perfect example of a conducive synergy between the Mozambique Municipality, the Mozambique  Civil Aviation Authority, the Airforce, the Police, the Harbor Authorities, as well as Air Traffic and Navigational services are the reasons why it was a resounding success and can be ranked as one of the best airshows in Africa.

The Aeroclub of Mozambique (ACM) has had an illustrious history and is the oldest Mozambican aeronautical institution and has been instrumental in pioneering the way for aviation on the African continent as wells been the forefather of commercial and military aviation in Mozambique.

Unlike other aeroclubs, whose main activity is limited to sports and recreational aviation, the history of ACM is marked by the training of aeronautical technicians by the support of public causes and by the contribution that it has given to the development of aviation in Mozambique.


Since its foundation the genesis of the Aero Clube de Moçambique has been defined by the voluntarism of its members, a principle that remains alive to this day.  The purchase of its first aircraft in 1928, a Gipsy Moth, was a result of a large monetary donation and the auction of a car, a luxurious Minerva, by the man who presided over its Constituent Assembly on 6 August of that year.

The example given by Sebastião Valle and Vasconcelos would be multiplied throughout the 90 years of history of the ACM.  The most symbolic and striking was perhaps the first flight that Armando Torre do Valle took between Xai-Xai and Alverca aerodrome in Portugal, in 1933.  He was the first amateur pilot to fly between South Africa and the European continent, he did it with his own funds and flying his de Havilland Puss Moth.  The navigation aids he relied on were very basic maps and a compass. Torre do Valle left Xai-Xai on 28 March, headed for Lumbo, flew to Malawi, then made stops in Tanzania, Kenyan, Sudan, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria, crossed the Mediterranean sea, flew over Spain and on 4 May 1933 landed in Alverca, Lisbon the capital of the Portuguese colonial empire that still had no aerodrome.


On return to Mozambique he founded the ACM and established the first commercial aviation company of the then colony, which was bought in 1935 by the Mozambique Railways (CFM), then run by Pinto Teixeira.  do Valle joined the AM with the Railways where he held the position as chairman of the board, this partnership gave a strong impetus to the creation of its flight school. This venture, in 1936 was the formation of the CFM’s Directorate for Operation of Air Transport (Direcção de Exploração do Transporte Aéreo or DETA), which in 1980 was transformed into what today is Mozambican Airlines (LAM).  In addition to the creation of the Civil Aviation Services in Mozambique in 1932, Aero Colonial in 1934, and DETA in 1936, the ACM was responsible for the construction of numerous airfields throughout the country. In part this resulted from the establishment of its subsidiaries in Lichinga, Pemba, Lumbo, Nampula, Angoche, Tete, Quelimane, Beira, Chimoio, Inhambane and Xai-Xai.


The independence of Mozambique however imposed an inevitable clash of mentalities and in particular, of political wills.  The vast majority of members left the country leading to the standstill in all branches of the ACM. Basically, all that was left were a few members a s well as its rich heritage.

It was with this that the ACM moved on to the post-independence era. Even so, it was the ACM’s pilots that played a key role in setting up the Mozambican Air Force by volunteering to train their pilots in 1976.  The ACM also was pivotal in training the army’s first parachutists, as well as played a vital role in humanitarian efforts when the country was hit by natural disasters.


Only after the signing of the General peace Agreement in 1992 did the ACM activity once again gain momentum and part of this ongoing momentum was to celebrate its 90th anniversary by hosting an airshow that has set new standards in airshow co-operation between various stakeholders.

The Maputo airshow was held over the Baía de Maputo (Bay of Maputo), under the RNVA approach into Maputo International airport and sandwiched in between serious no-fly zones, one which include the presidents palace, with over 20 commercial operations continuing as if were just another day, just goes to show that with all stakeholders committed to the ‘cause’, anything is possible, it would be a sigh of relief if the South African Civil Aviation authorities take note of this synergy, it also proves that cross-border airshows are now becoming the place to be due to the eagerness and wiliness of all authorities to make it a success, and to add to the show highlights, drones were flown, yes, drones in controlled airspace -the mind does boggle.


All kudos must go to the four dedicated and committed members of the ACM for their perseverance and tenacity in pulling off one of the best airshows in Africa; namely Gavin Neil, Bruno Homem, João Ribeiro and Bernardino Malawene, were the driving forces behind the show.  The organizing committee took cognancy of the fact that in order to pull off a show of this magnitude, help would be needed and that help came from a group of South African display pilots, Capital Sounds Broadcasting team that not only included the commentary on the day, but also played a vital role in the logistical planning of the airshow behind the scenes as well as offered critical support for the sea search and rescue operations as well as the Airshow Boss and Ramp Director from South Africa that assisted the Mozambican team in making history.


The vast crowds that filled the waterfront street of Av. 10 de Novembro (10 November avenue) were constantly entertained by non-stop action, either from the sea, air, or land as a jammed-packed airshow program kept them constantly applauding for more.


Aerial display acts included, drones, Bathawk, Boeing Stearman, Gyrocopter, skydiving, a gazelle helicopter display as well as Alo 11 helicopter display, a Yak, as well as the very famous Little Annie Antonov AN2, and some high-speed jet action in the form of the GoodYear Eagle L29 Jet.  Formation aerobatic teams kept the energy going and displays flown by the Puma Energy Flying Lions in their Harvard’s, the Tailift Cows Pitt Special aerobatic team, as well as the heart-stopping Team Extreme, and the radial formation made up of an AN2, Boeing Stearman and a Yak.

When the skies above the bay were not filled with smoke, the crowd’s attention was drawn to the action on the water that included a yacht race, jet ski races, as well as a jet ski and helicopter race.  For the land enthusiast, there plenty food and drink stalls, a children’s paly area as well as various activities including a sound stage that featured prominent local musicians kept everybody entertained for the entire day.

Unfortunately, all good things have to come to an end, and the penultimate display was a sunset display dedicated to the Airshow Director, Gavin Neil that saw his homebuilt Safari Z010 be flown as a tribute flight to him.  Closing the show was the very special and spectacular sunset display by the Puma Energy Flying Lions.

Thanks to Mark Mansfield for the report of the Maputo Airshow.
Photos below by Mark Mansfield – M Cubed Media

Click to enlarge

Botswana Airshow Rocks-Wesbank Botswana Airshow 2019

The African themed Oshkosh type fly-inn and airshow at Matsieng Airfield situated a few kilometeres outisde of the nations capital Gabarone. What makes a show so special here is getting the opportunity to camp bush style at an airfield and for some next to you aircraft.
Wesbank, once again a major sponsor for this years show at Matsieng with the help of the De Wet family, the show would not be possible.

We were flown from Wonderboom National Airport with ‘Little Annie’ the famous Antonov two owned by the Hill Family under the leadership of ‘Just Love Mission.As we cleared customs at Pilanesberg International Airport we made way to Matsieng Airfield, where we joined up in formation by a second An2 in old South African Airways Colours flown by Jon-Marc Hill and a Yak 18T, which made fantastic photo opportunities for the media onboard.

Antonov 2 ‘Daizy’

Friday Afternoon we got to see some validations before a late afternoon thunder storm made its way through the area, some of us scattred for the Town Lodge in Gabarone where we were fortunate enough to be
accommodated for the rest of the weekend thanks to the oragnisers. Saturday morning we made our way to the airfield for early arrivals as a perfect blue sky day was installed for the only airshow in Botswana this year.

The show started with a formation of microlights,a display that is not seen to often at shows in Southern Africa, showing off a dead stick landing was part of the show. ‘Little Annie’ An2 flown by Mark Hill and Col Keith Fryer
dropped skydivers including Ralph Ridge was the massive and biggest Botswana Flag. Jon- Marc Hill and His dad Mark flew a solo AN2 display and just to love ‘Little Annie’ even more she dropped marshmallows for the crowd. The vintage formation took to the skies, with this show being the first-time at a Southern African Airshow two Antonov 2s flew in formation with Randolph sponsored Boeing Stearman flown by Comair 737 Captain Ivan van der Schaar and Middleburg based YAK18T flown by Riaan Prinsloo. The crowd also got both a solo display by the Boeing Stearman and Yak18T. Capital Sounds Brian Emmenis and his hard working team rigged the longest sound system for the first time at the show, always a treat to hear the voice of Brian at Airshows as he brings the vibe to each show he attends.

Microlight Formation
Ralph Ridge-Big Botswana Flag
Skydivers Elmarie Grobler & Ian Jacobs
‘Little Annie’ AN2 solo display
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019
‘Little Annie’ An2 Marshmallow drop
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019
Youngsters with their Marshmallows
Vintage Formation-Boeing Stearman,Yak18T & Two AN2s
Boeing Stearman
Yak 18T

Conrad Botha started the days aerobatic sequences in his RV7, followed by the Raptor RVs led by Nigel Hopkins who also led Team Extreme flying his Extra 330, joining him was Jason Beamish in his new Extra 330, Mark ‘Buggs’ Hensman in his MX2 and Mark ‘Sammy ‘Sampson in his Sbach in new colours. The Goodyear Eagles flew the high energy aerobatic display led by Glen Warden, he also flew the only jet display for the day in the Rand Airport based L29 ZU-AUX.The ex Soviet jet trainer brought much joy to the jet fans at the show. The Puma Flying Lions Harvard’s flew their sequence with their second final show of the day ending with a great wall of fire. Gary Whitecross flew his Pilatus B4 Glider, one of the best glider display one can see at an airshow in Africa.

Conrad Botha RV7
Raptors RVs and MX2
Team Extreme
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019
Goodyear Eagles Pitts S2B
Goodyear Eagles Pitts S2Bs
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019
L29 ZU-AUX flown by Glen Warden
L29 ZU-AUX flown by Glen Warden

Andrew Blackwood-Murray flew his Nashua Extra 300 solo display, A gyrocopter display was also flown and a entertaining show to watch as the magni gyrocopter flown by Andre van Zyl was put through its paces. Menno Parsons brought both hisP51 Mustang, Pilatus PC12 and Tiger Huey.All aircraft are such a treat to see fly, the Huey also dropped a car in show center, “remember don’t park your car where it shouldn’t be at an airshow”.the air boss will move it!

Nashua Extra 300
Magni Gyro
P51D Mustang
Pilatus PC12
Tiger Huey
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019
Huey Car drop
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019

Helicopter displays included Alister Brown flying the Netstar Bell 407, a Bell 505 made its Southern African Airshow Debut. Juba Jourbert flew a fantastic display in the Aerospatiale Gazelle 341. Two Krugersdorp based North American Navions flew close formation in a flat show with smoke added to their display. Danie Terblanche flew the crazy pilot display in the Aviant Husky which had some of the crowd worried with the state of his crazy flying, Which is all part of the act. Dennis Spence led the decathlon display with basic aerobatic sequences. True North Aviation Turbo Thrush
demonstrated fire fighting capabilities as well as crop spraying capabilities. We wont forget some of the great RC flying that was also shown in-between displays.

Bell 407
Bell 505
Aerospatiale Gazelle
North American Navions
Aviant Husky
WesBank Botswana International Air Show 2019
Decathlon Formation
Turbo Thrush
RC Extra

With another safe show hosted at the Matsieng flying club under the AirBoss of Chris Briers and safety direct Colonel Francois ‘Hose’ Hanekom. All 43 acts gave the crowds a day to be remebered.We would like to thanks all the oragisers Wesbank,De Wet Drilling,Matsieng Flying Club, Mark Mansfield our media liaison officer and the Town Lodge.
Till next year Matsieng, Well done to all.

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