The organizers of the legendary biennial Warbirds Over Wanaka International Air Show in Wanaka, New Zealand have just announced the first of their U.S. military participants as their (modified) press release states…
The USAF C-17 Globemaster III Demonstration Team, based in Hawaii, will be making their third visit to the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest Warbirds air show.
Warbirds Over Wanaka’s General Manager, Ed Taylor, is thrilled to have such an impressive aircraft back to wow the crowd once more stating, “The C-17 is one of the world’s most popular military transport aircraft and is big, around twice the size of a C-130 Hercules.” Because of its massive size, the C-17 will once again stage out of CIAL (Christchurch International Airport), rather than Wanaka. As Ed Taylor notes, “CIAL are terrific supporters of our event, along with the RNZAF, who also play a crucial role in supporting visiting aircraft and crews.”
Taylor remarked that only pilots with a high level of experience are selected for military demonstration teams, due to the intense demands of the job. Ed Taylor continued, “In terms of the C-17, displaying at an air show takes flying these large aircraft to the next level, with precision and speed required to put on a proper demonstration for the public. Although the flying profile is not much different from an operational mission, it is very fast-paced so the pilots need to have additional training to ensure safety and precision flying.”
The C-17 Globemaster III first flew at Wanaka in 2016 and returned for the 30th Anniversary Airshow last Easter, along with the F-16 Fighting Falcon demonstration team. Ed Taylor expects to confirm a number of other military displays over the coming months.
Warbirds Over Wanaka International Airshow is being held at Wanaka Airport on April 10th, 11th and 12th next year. For more information and tickets go to www.warbirdsoverwanaka.com