Airshow Report : 2014 SoliDali Airshow

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The entertaining race between an original WWII-era Willy’s Jeep and a de Havilland DH.82A Tiger Moth

By Gabriele Lanzo.

At the end of every August in Italy, at an airfield near Nervesa della Battaglia, the world stops for the air show organized by the Team Solidali, and so it was over the weekend of August 30th/31st. The 2014 edition was very interesting both for pilots and planes, and also for public participation. After first stepping foot onto Nervesa airfield, one’s immediate impression is that you’ve jumped back into another time. You can meet armed soldiers walking in front of you, and see how a medical tent used to be during WWII thanks to the “Sentinelle del Lagazuoi” historical group of re-enactors. But the true emotional response begins when a de Havilland Tiger Moth starts its engine and, following a short taxi and take off, makes low passes over the field to simulate a wartime attack  flying straight towards you. The heart truly leaps into your throat on that impression…

The Jonathan Collection is a private flying museum of historic planes and replicas, based in Nervesa. They have a marvelous Caproni Ca-3 replica, and from the aircraft’s hangar two Tiger Moths and a Fokker DR.1 replica came out into the sun. They chased each others’ tails in a mock combat during Sunday’s demonstration to show the public how aerial warfare used to take place. Other historic planes and replicas participated in the show. But also, visitors got the chance to see aircraft from the Historical Aircraft Group, or HAG, like the Macchi MB308 of Andrea Rossetto and the Boredom Fighter Team that reached the Baracca airfield flying two home-built Wolf W-11 Boredom Fighters.

Zanardo's beautiful Fokker DR.I replica built between 1984 and 1986 after 4500 working hrs.
Zanardo’s beautiful Fokker DR.I replica built between 1984 and 1986 after 4500 working hours of construction.

Aerobatics lovers were in for a treat thanks to the participation by one of the most famous aerobatic pilots flying in Italy today, Francesco Fornabaio in his XtremeAir Xtreme3000. The pilot put on a great show that left the public with their eyes glued to the sky. Another great aerobatic performance came from a MDM.1 Fox glider towed into the sky behind a Cessna 150 Aerobat. The Fox pilot, Luca Bertossio, is a World Champion of Glider Aerobatics. His show is something special, and you can hear the sound of the Fox sliding through the air, and thanks to its smoke system, you can see it painting the sky like the brush of a true artist.

The world renowned AEROGALLO (Flying Rooster ) in formation with the Fokker and two Tiger moth.
The world renowned AEROGALLO (Flying Rooster ) in formation with the Fokker Dr.I replica and two Tiger Moths.

The air show also included flights by radio controlled models, including jets, quadcopters, helicopters and various other planes. Probably the most impressive models were two Junkers Ju-87 Stukas that simulated their characteristic dive bombing run, even going so far as to drop a scale reproduction of the bomb used by the real plane, complete with the screaming whistle of the dive sirens and a little explosion when the bombs hit. In addition the show entertained races between historical cars and aircraft, and even a competition between a hovercraft and plane. In the end, the public had the opportunity to see practically every kind of aircraft capable of landing on grass and to experience completely different realities by just walking a couple of meters along the field. It is well worth a visit next year.

Click HERE to visit the Jonathan Collection’s website.

Click HERE to visit the Team Solidali‘s website.

More picture from Gabriele.

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