The 2017 US Tour of the Patrouille de France has hit the West Coast! The team performed for one time only at Mather Airport in Sacramento, CA in the morning, then headed for a photo shoot with San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge in the evening. Spectators stood in awe as the eight-ship formation followed their supporting A400M Atlas transport/photoship on multiple flybys around the Bay Area. Two other Alpha Jets trailed the formation for more photos. These magnificent images from this flight really speak for themselves!
The eight Alpha Jets flew over Monument Valley, Horseshoe Bend, Lake Powell, and the Grand Canyon on Thursday! They will continue their US tour for just a couple more weeks before working their way home to France for the European airshow season.
The world’s two oldest military flight demonstration teams flew together Sunday night as the US Navy Blue Angels returned to Pensacola from Sun ‘n Fun with the Patrouille de France in tow to spend a few days with the team.
The eight Alpha Jets of the Patrouille teamed up with the Blue’s six F/A-18 Hornets at sunset, flying down the coastline and creating a fantastic photo opportunity for Blue Angel #7 to snap a few pictures, like the one above.
The French team’s visit is part of a nationwide tour that takes them from coast to coast. The team just wrapped up the central Florida portion of the visit with airshow performances in Melbourne, FL and Lakeland, FL.
Although we first reported on it in November, the Patrouille de France officially announced their 2017 North American tour today and unveiled all of the stops on their schedule. See below for a full list of their appearances, which is translated and subject to change. The team also released the logo of their tour, which curiously mentions the US but not Canada.
The Patrouille de France is the French equivalent of the Blue Angels or Thunderbirds, and performs precision formation aerobatics using Dassault/Dornier Alpha Jets. Their aircraft will sport special paint schemes during the 2017 season to commemorate their tour, which coincides with the 100th anniversary of America’s entry into World War I in France. According to their graphic, they will travel with ten Alpha Jets and one A-400M airlifter.
2017 North American Tour Appearance Schedule – Patrouille de France
March 19th: Arrive Bagotville, QC
March 25th: Statue of Liberty Flyby, New York (12pm) March 26th: Washington DC flyby (1pm) and reception with French Ambassador
April 1st and 2nd: Melbourne Air Show, FL
April 3rd and 4th: Sun-n-Fun Airshow, Lakeland, FL
April 5th and 6th: Commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of US entry into WW1, Kansas City, MO
April 7th-9th: Maxwell AFB Airshow, AL
April 10th-12th: Visit w/USN Blue Angels at NAS Pensacola, FL
April 12th: Flyby over Trescal Factory, Dallas, TX
April 12th: Refueling in Santa Fe, NM
April 13th: Grand Canyon, AZ Flyby/photoshoot
April 13th-16th: California Capitol Airshow, Sacramento & Golden Gate Bridge Flyby in San Francisco, CA
April 17th-18th: Visit w/USAF Thunderbirds at Nellis AFB, NV
April 19th: Refueling at Peterson AFB and USAF Academy Flyby, CO
April 19th: Refueling at Scott AFB, IL
April 20th-21st: VIP Event at Langley AFB, VA
April 22nd-23rd: Airshow at Stewart ANG Base, NY
April 28th-29th: NATO Tattoo in Norfolk, VA
April 30th: Wings Over Gatineau Airshow, Gatineau, QC
May 1st: Montreal, QC
May 2nd: Quebec City, QC
May 4th: Departure from Bagotville, QC
The Patrouille de France, France’s aerobatic jet team has released pictures of a new tail paint on their Alpha Jets for the 2017 show season.
The pictures, taken during training flights during the winter season, debut a new tail display that differs from the traditional red, white and blue striped tail. The 2017 tail features a wave pattern of red, white, and blue as well as several stars.
Want to see the paint for yourself? If you live in the United States, you have a rare chance to catch the team in action this year in the U.S. The team will perform at the Melbourne Airshow, Sun ‘n Fun, and Maxwell AFB. If you live in Canada, you can see the team when they perform at the Wings over Gatineau Airshow in Quebec in late April.
What do you think of the paint? Do you like the look? Share your comments with us on our Facebook page or in the forums!
AirshowStuff has learned that the Patrouille de France, France’s Aerobatic Jet Team, will be performing at another US site in 2017. Maxwell AFB, Alabama will host the team on April 8-9th as part of their open house.
The base will be open to the public from 8 am to 4 pm on both days. The United States Air Force Thunderbirds will also perform.
The Patrouille de France, France’s aerobatic jet team and equivalent to the US Navy Blue Angels and US Air Force Thunderbirds, will perform in the United States in early 2017. Plans are currently in place for only one or two shows, though we certainly hope more are added.
As of now, the only confirmed show for the team will be the Melbourne Air and Space Show, April 1-2nd 2017 at the Melbourne International Airport in Florida. We have heard rumors of a planned show in the central United States, but as of the writing of this post, AirshowStuff has not confirmed that rumor.
The team performs with eight Alpha Jets, a light attack and advanced trainer aircraft co-manufactured by Dassault Aviation of France and Dornier Flugzeugwerke of Germany. Their display involves both formation and solo maneuvers. Based at Salon Air Force Base in France, the team utilizes red, white and blue smoke in their 30 minute show.
The last time the team performed publicly in the United States was 1986, when they flew over New York City and then performed at Coney Island. In 2009, the team performed a flyover of the Yorktown Battlefield Monument in Yorktown, VA to commemorate the Battle of Yorktown anniversary. They also performed at an airshow in Quebec, Canada during that tour, but did not stop at any US airshows.