You know what they say about having to involve a whole village to raise a child? Well…hold on to that thought.
The Singapore Airshow returns this year with displays and aerial showcases that promises to be bolder, better. Judging from what we saw at the preview hosted by our very own RSAF (Republic of Singapore Air Force), that promise is certainly a reality. Even as we prepare ourselves to be impressed by the latest aerial acrobats and marvel at those magnificent flying machines the Airshow has to offer, what struck me was the intense passion seen in the crew members involved, be it the ground crew or the pilots.
As part of the media preview, we had the privilege of watching some of the ground crew at work – prepping the F15SG for the aerial acrobat. We were impressed by the intensity in their eyes and the high and meticulous standards they fulfilled in doing their job. That same level of dedication is seen again when we were viewing some of the static displays at the Changi Exhibition Center – crew men were vigorously polishing and cleaning every nook and corner of every RSAF aircraft, from the landing gears to the inconspicuous corners and panels. Honestly, they needn’t have to – seeing these ‘legendary’ air crafts close up alone will be awestruck enough to elicit the ‘oohs’ and ‘aaahs’ from the public – but the pride in ensuring our planes stay in tip top condition keeps them going!
Imagine seeing the Apache AH64D up close and touching it – a helicopter that used to fill this boy’s childhood dreams. Then, there’s one of the Black Knights F 16C in its exact SG50 Livery – I still remember seeing them doing those death-defying stunts in heavy rain at last year’s SG50 National Day Parade. Now its right before me and my daughter Dana even had a photo-op in its cockpit. How about the Chinook? The ones that hoist the National Flag annually for all to see during National Day fly pass? We actually got to go inside and feel just for that few seconds how the crew must have felt during NDP. Yup, these legendary flying machines and more from overseas participants await us at the Singapore Airshow 2016 happening this weekend.
To every crew member, the pride is not just doing their job well but doing their country proud. When we spoke to Captain Andy (who flies one of the Apache) and Captain Nah (one of the handful of female pilots and the only one flying the F15SG!) further affirms this – their training is nothing short of rigorous but beyond all that, they are determined to do their country proud. Speaking to them truly inspired this Daddy and Daughter duo. The affable Captain Nah even managed to inspire Dana to switch her childhood ambition from being a police woman to being an F15Sg pilot when she grows up! If that truly materialises (by God’s grace), we would be so immensely proud!
While it takes a whole village to raise a child, it takes a whole team to put our Top Guns up in the sky! So come down to the Singapore Airshow and while you marvel at the exhibitions and displays, do take time to speak to the RSAF team that supports these might flying machines.
Watch our Youtube link for video highlights of what you can expect at the Singapore Airshow 2016:
Here’s more of what you can expect to see at the upcoming Singapore Airshow 2016 from 20 to 21 Feb 2016 at the Changi Exhibition Center: (Excerpt from Media Release)
Singapore Airshow 2016 is open to the Public on 20 and 21 February 2016. Visitors can look forward to a wide range of exciting activities including static aircrafts on display as well as the amazing and adrenalin-pumping aerobatic flying displays by various teams. There will also be meet-the-pilot sessions where visitors can take photos and get their autographs.
Breathtaking Aerial Stunts
One of the key highlights in the aerobatic flying display will be the RSAF integrated aerial display team, comprising an F-15SG fighter jet and an AH-64D Apache attack helicopter. They will perform three integrated and eight solo manoeuvres, demonstrating power and agility. Their routine includes the Vertical Punch, a new manoeuvre that is being performed for the first time: The Apache AH-64D attack helicopter will pull up to the skies, and flip around as if performing an aerial ballet, before meeting the F-15SG flying in from the opposite direction. The F‑15SG fighter jet will then punch through the clouds in a spectacular vertical climb.
The exhilarating line-up for this year’s aerobatic flying display will also see the return of the Black Eagles from the Republic of Korea Air Force, known for their jaw-dropping aerobatic stunts. In addition, some of the magnificent aircraft that will take to the skies include the French Air Force’s Dassault Rafale, the U.S. Air Force’s C-17 Globemaster III and F-16C/D Fighting Falcon, and the Su-30MKM from the Royal Malaysia Air Force.
Get up close and personal with the latest aircraft
The Republic of Singapore Air Force Black Knights will showcase one of their F-16C aircraft, in its gleaming crescent and stars livery, at the static aircraft display. Other key highlights of the static aircraft display include two USAF F-22 stealth fighters and the Airbus A400M – a modern military transport plane using the latest fly-by-wire flight control system – all of which will be taking part at the Singapore Airshow for the first time.
Young and aspiring pilots will have the opportunity to meet and interact with the men and women who have chosen a career in the skies at the Meet-the-Pilots sessions. In addition, The Captain’s Den, a new e-store which offers a wide range of Singapore Airshow memorabilia has been launched.