Kyle Franklin Flies It Like He Stole It, Collects Bill Barber Award At EAA AirVenture 2017

posted in: Aerobatics | 0

Kyle Franklin Awarded Bill Barber Award for Showmanship

Second generation airshow pilot Kyle Franklin was awarded the Bill Barber Award for Showmanship during an annual ceremony on Tuesday evening of EAA AirVenture 2017 in Oshkosh, WI.

The Bill Barber Award for Showmanship began in 1986, and is awarded to air show performers or teams that have demonstrated great skill and showmanship. World Airshow News magazine and the friends and family of the late Bill Barber present the award annually.

Kyle is now in his 20th year of performing in airshows. He got his start in the industry by wingwalking on his late father’s Waco biplane at age 17 – the youngest ever. He’s also known for being the first jet biplane wingwalker, creating his popular pirate-themed act “Pirated Skies,” and performing the motorcycle to airplane transfer act.

Today, Franklin flies his popular “Dracula” biplane performances and Super Cub comedy act at airshows across the nation. He performed his “stolen” Cub act twice during the week at AirVenture, and took one of our cameras along for a harrowing ride on Tuesday. Thanks to Chris Desmond for the help with the footage!

We also filmed Kyle’s act from the ground, where you can really see how much skill he has as he throws the aircraft all over the sky (and sometimes the ground) while remaining in complete control.

While accepting the award, Kyle remembered those who he grew up with in the airshow industry, including his parents and his late wife Amanda Franklin, and thanked them for their help in getting him to where he is today.

Kyle joins his father, Jimmy Franklin who was awarded with the award in 1989. Kyle and Jimmy are the second father and son to receive the Bill Barber Award. Bobby Younkin (2004) and his son Matt (2012) were the first.

Congrats Kyle!

Video Highlight: Take A Ride In The B-25 Mitchell “Show Me”

posted in: Featured Videos, Warbirds | 0

B-25 Mitchell "Show Me"

One of the most popular portions of our Youtube channel is our series of on-board videos, which take you to unique vantage points on and in some of your favorite aircraft. We recently added two new videos to the collection, thanks to the help of the Commemorative Air Force’s Missouri Wing. We invite you to take a ride in their B-25 Mitchell “Show Me” at the 2016 Spirit of St Louis Airshow and STEM Expo.

The B-25 was one of three large WWII bombers, along with the B-29 Superfortress “FIFI” and the B-17 Flying Fortress “Texas Raiders”, to perform flybys together during the show. If you look closely in the video, you can even pick out the other aircraft flying ahead. We also filmed the flybys from the ground, so you can see all three incredible aircraft, and get a feel for the low passes each made.

The Missouri Wing offers flight experiences in “Show Me” as well as their TBM Avenger, which we had the privilege to ride in last month. If you want to experience living history and some awesome flying at the same time, please consider booking a seat on one of their flights!

B-25 Mitchell “Show Me” Cockpit View – Spirit of St Louis Airshow and STEM Expo 2016

B-25 Mitchell “Show Me” Turret View – Spirit of St Louis Airshow and STEM Expo 2016

B-29/B-17/B-25 Flybys – Spirit of St Louis Airshow and STEM Expo 2016

Thank you to the CAF Missouri Wing, and in particular Bob Lawrence and Matt Conrad for their assistance!

Video Highlight: Arsenal of Democracy On-Board Video Takes You In The Cockpit During DC The Flyover

The Arsenal of Democracy flyover in Washington DC a little over a week ago was a huge success, and we have seen many spectacular images and videos from it. Hopefully you were able to see it in person or on the live stream, but if not you can catch CSPAN’s recorded footage online. What’s even more exciting is you can now take a seat in one of the more than 50 warbirds that participated! Check out the video below, provided by our partner JL Aero. The camera was mounted in the rear seat of a TBM Avenger in the flyby, and shows the taxi out, takeoff, formation flight en route, the flight down the mall, and landing. The most interesting moment may be the wingman’s in flight emergency captured by the camera, which you can read more about in the video’s description.

RideAlong! in the CAF National Capitol Squadron’s TBM Avenger torpedo bomber as it joins another TBM and the world’s only flying SB2C Helldiver dive bomber in the “Leyte Gulf” formation during the Arsenal of Democracy flyover in Washington DC. The AOD flyover was organized to celebrate the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day, recognized on May 8th. More than 50 rare WWII warbirds from around the country gathered at airports in Manassas and Culpeper in the days leading up to the event. On the day of the flyover, aircraft took off and joined into 15 different formations, each representing a critical battle during the war. The aircraft flew down the Potomac River, down the National Mall, and then returned to the airports. Spectators on the ground were treated to a ceremony marking the significance of the day, and narration describing each formation as it passed overhead.
At 5:35, you will see the other TBM Avenger “Leyte 3” suddenly break from the formation. The pilot declared an in flight emergency due to a broken hydraulic fitting in the engine area. The atomized fluid looked like smoke and the pilot thought the aircraft was on fire. He turned immediately towards Reagan National Airport (visible in the background) and landed safely there.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJgTYs6OvaY

Don’t forget to subscribe to AirshowStuff on Youtube for more amazing videos like this one!