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Re: Duxford Airshows 2020

Posted: Mon Sep 28, 2020 7:21 pm
by Adam
Flightline Uk wrote: Mon Sep 28, 2020 11:26 am The final Showcase Day of the year on 10th October will hopefully feature:
Supermarine Spitfire Ia – Imperial War Musuems/Aircraft Restoration Company
Supermarine Spitfire Ia – Comanche Fighters LLC
Supermarine Spitfire Ia – Comnache Fighters LLC
Hawker Hurricane I – R4118/Hurricane Heritage
Hawker Hurricane I – P3717/Bygone Aviation Ltd
Hawker Hurricane XII – Historic Aircraft Collection
North American TF-51D Mustang – Anglia Aircraft Restorations
Consolidated PBY-5A Catalina – Planes Sailing Catalina Operations
de Havilland DH89a Dragon Rapide – D&M Miller
O’Brien’s Flying Circus – Piper J3C Cub
O’Brien’s Flying Circus – Schweizer S300C ‘OTTO’
Le Vier Cosmic Wind – Pete Kynsey
SIAI-Marchetti SF260 – Paul Freeland
Cassutt IIIM – Private
de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver – Aircraft Resoration Company
North American Harvard IV – T6 Harvard Aviation
North American NA64 Yale – Yale 3349
Extra 300L – James Hepnar
Looks to be their best of the year so far, albeit with very noticeable repetition as compared to the last two showcase days. I look forward to it, nonetheless. One last hurrah for our abbreviated airshow season.

Re: Duxford Airshows 2020

Posted: Fri Oct 02, 2020 8:31 am
by Flightline Uk
IWM Duxford may have been unable to deliver its 2020 Air Show season as hoped but flying fans can catch spectacular displays and moving tributes to those who fought in the Battle of Britain on Saturday 10 October.

IWM Duxford will welcome visitors to its final Showcase Day of the year on Saturday 10th October with the opportunity to explore the museums fascinating hangars and recently opened Battle of Britain exhibitions, before a range of spectacular aircraft take flight between 1-2pm and 3-4pm.

The flying schedule will feature three Mk1 Spitfires and two Hurricanes, a fitting tribute to ‘The Few’ in this 80th commemorative year since the Battle of Britain, as well as a de Havilland Beaver, Yale and T6 Harvard. Also taking off over the historic airfield will be a P-51 Mustang, Catalina, Dragon Rapide and SIAI-Marchetti SF260.

In between thrilling air displays, there will be plenty on the ground to explore including Laguna Spitfire Legacy, a group dedicated to showcasing the Polish contribution during the Second World War, who will be on site with a Spitfire cockpit replica and equipment used by Polish squadrons. Get up close to fascinating aircraft with display items from Historic Aircraft Collection, see live tank and military vehicle demonstrations from DAS Military Vehicle Wing and discover a replica of an observer post used in Essex from 14 Group Royal Observer Corp.

As visitor numbers on site will be limited to ensure social distancing, please pre-book tickets to the Showcase Day in advance via the IWM website to avoid disappointment.

Re: Duxford Airshows 2020

Posted: Fri Oct 09, 2020 9:06 pm
by Adam
Cracking line up for tomorrow! Really going for quality over duration. A few cancellations, not all shown on the website, and equally a couple of additions, not all shown. The flying will be in a single 90 minute block, starting at 1pm, with the following running order:
  • Radial trio: Beaver, Harvard, Yale
  • James Hepnar Extra 300
  • x2 P-51D Mustang & Hispano Buchon
  • Peter Kuypers Bell 47
  • Twins: Dragon Rapide and Catalina
  • Battle of Britain: x3 Hurricane & x3 Spitfire Mk.I
Currently one empty slot due to a last-minute cancellation, so not sure whether that'll be filled, or what by. No longer listed, as it stands, are the Marchetti, O'Brien's Flying Circus, Cassutt Racer and the LeVier Cosmic Wind.

Re: Duxford Airshows 2020

Posted: Sat Oct 10, 2020 6:34 pm
by Adam
An interesting day at Duxford today, starting out with some rather horrible weather - just 6 degrees, wet and rather damp! Luckily, after a rather miserable two hours staking out my place on the crowdline, the weather abated just in time for the start of the flying display, and we even had some sun! The rain started again just as the last aircraft touched down - you can't ask for better timing than that.

Today's flying display was in a single block of around 80 minutes - considerably less than the usual pair of hour-long flying displays on a Showcase Day. This was in part due to some unfortunate last-minute cancellations that were by no means IWM's fault, such as late-running maintenance and one pilot suddenly needing to self-isolate. Luckily, IWM went all out when booking heavy warbirds, and despite the short duration, we still saw more aircraft taking part in the flying display than usual.

The show started with James Hepnar in his Extra 300L, who has improved his display since August with a few flick rolls and other new manoeuvres. This was followed by a rather disappointing "radial trio" featuring the DHC-2 Beaver, T-6 Harvard and NA-64 Yale. After several formation passes, the trio filled the rest of their slot with an odd and rather lethargic tailchase-esque sequence, which completely failed to show off any of the aircraft in a photogenic or exciting way.

This was followed by a rather enjoyable trio of Hispano Buchon "Yellow 10", P-51D Mustang "Miss Helen" and TF-51D Mustang "Contrary Mary". Starting with a formation topside pass, the Buchon then peeled off and performed a short solo display before being set upon by the two Mustangs, which I mostly failed to capture because I am a div and forgot to press the record button. After this came a solo from Peter Kuypers in the Bell 47, and another disappointing combination (this time, Catalina and Dragon Rapide in loose formation). While a nice idea on paper perhaps, this slot offered neither the chance to capture both aircraft in close formation, nor the chance to see their much more impressive solo routines. Perhaps instead of allocating the pair ten minutes to display in formation, the FDD could have given them 15 minutes - five in formation, and five each for a solo. This would have shown off the aircraft much better, with minimal extra effort, and would have helped string out the flying display to a more typical duration.

Fortunately, the final act of the day more than made up for these shortcomings, as a trio of Spitfire Mk.Ias, Hurricane Mk.I and Hurricane Mk.XIIa took off for their display. Starting with some wonderful 5-ship passes in close formation, the aircraft then spaced out for a wonderful tailchase sequence. One of the Spitfires then performed a short solo routine while the other aircraft came into land. This is how to stage a multi-aircraft set-piece - not what we saw in some of the other slots!

On the way home, I decided to try something out that looked possible on Google Maps and which I've been meaning to try for a while: I walked to Whittlesford Parkway and took the train home. I did this with some trepedation, as I haven't seen anyone do this before and am not aware of it being suggested or recommended anywhere (IWM themselves don't suggest walking from Whittlesford Parkway, instead recommending a public bus which only runs a few times each day). The approximately 2km walk was entirely on paved footpaths and quiet country roads, and took me 28 minutes precisely. The only obsticle is that you have to cross two motorway slip roads, but aside from revealing serious shortcomings in drivers' ability to use their indicators properly on roundabouts, this didn't seem particularly challenging or dangerous as long as you've got your wits about you. I know there are plenty of Americans on this forum, some of whom are planning a UK trip at some point, and who don't want to drive over here. On the basis of today, I'd suggest you consider walking from Whittlesford Parkway station (which is connected every half-hour by trains to London - a one hour journey with return tickets starting at around £15) as a reliable and extremely doable alternative to the airshow's shuttle bus services.

I've linked a video of the Spitfire and Hurricane sequence, which I hope you'll think is worth a watch!