A Thunderbird performance displays the pride, precision and professionalism of the team while highlighting the skills and training indicative of all members of the U.S. Air Force. Years of training and a lifetime of dreaming are brought together in the hour-long demonstration, exhibiting what the Air Force is all about.
Showcasing the utmost professionalism and the esprit de corps shared by our enlisted members, the sharp movements and rhythm of the showline embody the ground ceremony. As the jets take to the skies, the maneuvers flown demonstrate the awesome capabilities and skills that all fighter pilots must possess. From the loops and rolls to the formation flying and high-speed passes – these are just a small example of what is required of every combat aviator.
The demonstration is a mix of six aircraft performing formation flying and solo routines. The four-ship Diamond formation demonstrates the precision and training of Air Force pilots, as well as the gracefulness of the F-16. The two solos display the power and maximum capabilities of the mighty F-16 Fighting Falcon, a front-line fighter.
The Snowbirds Demonstration Team (431 Squadron) is a Canadian icon composed of serving members of the Canadian Forces. Their pilots and technicians work as a team to bring thrilling performances to the North American public. Serving as Canadian ambassadors, the Snowbirds demonstrate the high level of professionalism, teamwork, excellence, discipline, and dedication inherent in the women and men of the Air Force and the Canadian Forces.
Black Diamond Team
The Black Diamond Jet Team is a seven-ship aerobatic civilian-owned jet team. The team is fully-sponsored by United Bank Card, Inc. The sponsorship enables the team to be a featured act for shows not hosting a military jet team. With five L-39s and two Mig-17s all in the Arctic camouflage paint scheme, the Lakeland, FL based Black Diamond Jet Team is an exciting addition to the current demonstration teams available to air shows, as well as for private and sporting event flyovers.
The Infamous GEICO Skytypers Airshow Team is a flight squadron of six vintage WWII airplanes performing precision flight maneuvers at select airshows across the US. The diverse flying expertise of the team members aligns perfectly with the unique components of their overall performance. They are the only civilian squadron currently appearing at airshows and flying WWII aircraft, the SNJ-2. Of the 11 remaining SNJ-2 airplanes still in existence, the team uses six of these. The team performs a low level precision formation flying routine combined with a thrilling aeronautical demonstration highlighting the unique capabilities of the aircraft while adding a richness to the history of aviation and its core foundation. In addition, GEICO Skytypers are often found typing messages utilizing the horizon as a back drop. These messages can be as tall as the empire state building and visible for up to 15 miles away.
F-18 Tac Demo
Strike Fighter Squadron 106 (VFA-106) was commissioned at NAS Cecil Field on April 27, 1984, flying the Navy’s newest tactical aircraft, the F/A-18 Hornet. In the summer of 1999 VFA-106 moved from NAS Cecil Field to NAS Oceana, VA. As the East Coast Fleet Replacement Squadron, the Gladiators’ mission is to train F/A-18 Replacement Aircrew to support fleet commitments. Every 6 weeks a class of between 8-12 newly-winged Navy and Marine Corps Aircrew begins the 9 month training course in which they will learn the basics of air-to-air and air-to-ground missions culminating in day/night carrier qualification and subsequent assignment to a fleet Hornet squadron.
Sponsored by Whelen and Goodyear, Michael Goulian is one of only a few sport aviators who are popular on a global scale. An edgy, aggressive, and “all out” style of flying have become Michael’s signature, and it amazes fans across the globe.
On most weekends from April through November, Michael can be seen flying a mesmerizing and intense highperformance solo aerobatic display accompanied by a high-tech choreographed music system that keeps spectators on the edge of their seats.
Michael has been lucky to be rewarded with some of the industry’s highest honors. In 1990, he became one of the youngest U.S. National Advanced Champions when he took that title at just 22 years old. He followed that up in 1995 by winning the ultimate in U.S. aerobatics, the Unlimited National Aerobatic Championship.
In the air show world, Michael has been awarded both the Art Scholl (2006) and Bill Barber (2009) Awards for Airshow Showmanship. The recipient of these awards reads like a who’s who in the air show world over the last two decades so Michael feels very honored to be included with the “greats.”
Michael and his entire team are very proud to have won the prestigious Red Bull Air Race Budapest in 2009.
Michael has almost two decades of experience performing at the world’s top air shows and races, having started in the business at age 18. Although he enjoys his reputation as a great aviator with a flawless safety record, he is also a dedicated professional with his fans. Michael also prides himself as being easy to work with and unassuming with event organizers and the media.
Sponsored by Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Matt is recognized as an extraordinary aerobatic pilot who thrills millions of air show fans each summer. He began flying aerobatics in 1984 and quickly worked his way up to the highest level of competition aerobatics – the Unlimited category. Recognized for his skills, he won one of only five slots on the U.S. Unlimited Men’s Aerobatic Team in 1996 and 1998.
At the 1998 World Aerobatic Championships, Matt was the highest-ranking American pilot, finishing third in the world with a bronze medal. He led the Men’s Team to a silver medal. Along with this impressive finish came the coveted Hilliard Trophy, awarded to the highest finishing U.S. pilot at the WAC.
Matt also won the prestigious International Aerobatic Club Championships in 1994 and the Fond du Lac Cup in 1995. Matt has flown in front of millions of fans at air shows all over. He has appeared on ESPN, ESPN2, Fox Sports Network, Real TV, The Learning Channel’s “Amazing America,” and SpeedVision.
“How did he do that?” When you experience the thrill of watching Rob Holland fly, that is exactly what you will be asking yourself. Millions of people have marveled over Rob’s non-stop, action-packed air show routine. Stepping off his Gold Metal Finish at the 8th World Advanced Aerobatic Championships, Rob brings a whole new and exciting set of world-class maneuvers to his routine this year.
Flying the MX2 Aerobatic Aircraft by MX Aircraft Ultimate Airshows brings unrivaled performance in the sky over America’s best air shows. Rob Holland pushes the envelope of the most advanced aerobatic aircraft in the airshow industry today. With a high-energy mixture of both high and low altitude maneuvers, Rob will delight and amaze your audience while remaining well within his high margin of safety.
Rob’s infectious, upbeat, and approachable demeanor makes him a favored crowd-pleaser at air shows. His complete love of aviation is immediately apparent to everyone who meets him. Rob hopes to instill into others his insatiable desire to excel and for them to actively pursue their goals and dreams.
Sponsored by Air National Guard, John was introduced to flying by one of his friends shortly after he graduated high school. John continued to take flight lessons during college and in his senior year, John discovered the Air National Guard. After graduating from the University of Minnesota, Duluth, John went to the Air National Guard pilot training program where he got his wings from the Air Force in Texas and was assigned to the Air Guard in Minnesota. Now he flies both the C-130 Hercules and the F-16 for the Guard.
In his quest to continually improve his skills as a pilot, John began to train and participate in competitive aerobatic contests on both the regional and national level. This led him into air show performing and ultimately to flying air shows for the Air National Guard.
Sponsored by Lopresti, Corkey has 17,000-plus hours in over 287 different types of aircraft. Corkey has flown on every continent of the world
He has worked as a test pilot, corporate pilot, aerial coordinator, fixed wing camera pilot, technical advisor, actor, and stunt pilot including over 2,600 low level aerobatic performances, and formed the first civilian high performance aerobatic flight demonstration team, using WWII fighters. He also formed and lead the first civilian jet demonstration team, flying BD-5Js. Corkey is currently the Director of Flight Operations and chief test pilot for LoPresti Aviation.
Jason has the kind of extensive, unlimited-level aerobatic experience that has produced the top air show performers in the industry today.
He has been instructed and mentored by some of the aerobatics community’s most revered figures, including Michael Goulian, Sean D. Tucker, Jim Leroy, Clint McHenry, Nikolai Timofeev, and Bill Stein.
ICAS and the FAA have authorized Jason to fly high-performance solo and formation performances in several types of aircraft. Jason is also a licensed Aircraft Mechanic (A+P) and has received his Inspection Authorization from the FAA. He has built several aircraft and maintains many other air show performance aircraft.
Cheryl is an aviator and the most successful competitive skydiver in the world. Her accomplishments include:
- Amelia Earhart Pioneering Achievement Award recipient (2007)
- Arizona Aviation Hall of Fame inductee (April 2007)
- Inducted into the Embry-Riddle Wall of Fame, Daytona Beach, FL
- Wiley Post Commission’s 2005 Wiley Post Spirit Award recipient. This annual award recognizes an aviation innovator and pioneer who does not receive government or large corporation funding.
- Current and 23 time U.S. Women’s Parachuting Champion
- Awarded a specially created Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI) Centenary Medal for her significant personal contribution to the development of air sports and aviation (October 2005)
- Awarded the Diplome Leonardo da Vinci, the world’s highest award in aerosports, for her unique achievements in skydiving.
- A total of 30 world records in parachuting. At one time held four different world records simultaneously: a feat no other parachutist, man or woman, has matched.
- First female member of the U.S. Army’s elite parachuting team, the Golden Knights
- Three-time overall women’s style and accuracy champion at the military world championships (1991, 1995, 1996)
- Guinness World Record holder for the most parachute jumps in 24 hours by a woman, 352 jumps (November 8-9, 1995). During this endurance test, Cheryl added an additional challenge by aiming for a five-centimeter target on each jump. Despite the cold and wind, Cheryl hit the target a record 188 times: 104 in daytime, 84 at night.
- Over 70 first-place women’s titles from the annual U.S. National and biannual World Championships in Parachuting and scores of medals from other national and international competitions. Four times Cheryl has been the overall
U.S. Champion for men and women combined, most recently in 1998.
- Over 17,000 skydives, the most of any woman in the world
- Master of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Pope Air Force Base campus.
- US Airways captain in the Embraer 190 and Boeing 737-200, a first officer in the Boeing 757/767 and in the Airbus. She has flown over 75 different types of aircraft, has over 18,000 flying hours and over 19,000 aircraft landings.
Danny Clisham “Master of Ceremonies”
Lights! Cameras! Action! It’s Showtime…
SkyTalker Danny Clisham is ready to entertain you. From a grass strip flying a Piper Cub to a flight test pilot on the Evergreen Boeing 747 Supertanker, the SkyTalker will keep you in the “Top Fun” zone. You are listening to the announcer with more awards and honors than any other announcer in the history of air shows, including the Clifford Henderson Award, the ICAS Sword of Excellence, the Art Scholl Showmanship Award, the Bill Barber Award for Showmanship, Honorary Canadian Forces Snowbird, and the ICAS Foundation Air Show Hall of Fame.
The Plunkett WW1 Aviation Collection
Sopwith F.1 Camel (Great Britan)
An agile, highly maneuverable biplane, it was called the Camel due to the humped fairing over its twin machine guns. It had wicked torque and killed a lot of novice British pilots, but the Sopwith Camel (5,490 produced) shot down more German aircraft (1,294) than any other Allied plane.
Fokker DR.I Triplane (German)
The Fokker DR.I triplane was built after the Sopwith Triplane. While not as fast as contemporary biplanes, the Dreidecker could easily outclimb any opponent. Small, lightweight and highly maneuverable, it offered good upward visibility and lacked the traditional bracing wires that could be shot away during combat. Best known for its image as the “Red Baron’s” aircraft during WWI as it was flown by Baron Manfred von Richthofen, the leading ace of the war. Unique in its characteristic three-winged design and small rudder surface, it was noted that the DR-I was a very capable “dogfighter” and was a deadly foe with the right pilot at the controls.