Air International 2021-05
P.Eden - Texan Star
Wing Commander Chris Ball, Officer Commanding 72(F) Sqn, believes the best trained pilots also have an appreciation for what came before. He flew Texan ZM325 alongside RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Spitfire Mk XVI TE311 in July 2020, marking the 80th anniversary of that seminal engagement. Air Commodore Mark Flewin, RAF Typhoon Force Commander, was at the Spitfire’s controls
Wing Commander Chris Ball, Officer Commanding 72(F) Sqn, believes the best trained pilots also have an appreciation for what came before. He flew Texan ZM325 alongside RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Spitfire Mk XVI TE311 in July 2020, marking the 80th anniversary of that seminal engagement. Air Commodore Mark Flewin, RAF Typhoon Force Commander, was at the Spitfire’s controls
As they progress through the basic fast jet training course, students learn close formation flying, operating just 2m off the wing of a second Texan
The UK’s demand for frontline pilots has increased since the MFTS requirements were agreed and the Texan fleet has thus gained an additional four aircraft. Although simulation is more important than ever, the Texans are still kept busy
Flying training students throughout history would recognise the ritual of the pre-flight walkaround. A fighter pilot from any time between the 1930s and 2000 might also have perceived familiarity in the Tucano cockpit, but that of the Texan is geared to fourth and fifth-generation jets