Jet Team schedules won’t be released until next week, but the Canadian Forces Snowbirds have already confirmed that their 2020 show season will not start until June 6th.
The team is over a month behind their planned training schedule following an October crash at the Atlanta Air Show in Georgia. Pilot Capt. Kevin Domon-Grenier, Snowbird #5,was uninjured in the crash. He was forced to eject after the aircraft’s engine failed while the team was forming up away from the spectators. The aircraft came down in an open field and no one on the ground was injured.
The remaining CT-114 Tutor jets on the team were left grounded in Georgia during the post-crash investigation as a precaution. They were flown back to CFB Moose Jaw only a week ago, well behind schedule.
Now that the jets are home, the team will get to work training the new pilots and perfecting their routine for the 2020 show season, which marks the 50th anniversary of the team. Although they usually start performing at US shows in May each year, they announced today that they will push back their start date to allow for enough training time. No preliminary 2020 schedule has yet been released by the team, so it is unknown what shows would have hosted them normally. We expect the full 2020 schedule to be released next Tuesday during the International Council of Air Shows convention.
The Canadian Forces Snowbirds will return to full operations at their home base of 15 Wing Moose Jaw in Saskatchewan, beginning today.
The CT-114 Tutor fleet has been on an operational pause since Snowbird 5 was forced to eject prior to an air show at the Atlanta Speedway on October 13, 2019.
While the Royal Canadian Air Force Directorate of Flight Safety is continuing its investigation, the return to operations follows a thorough risk assessment process.
The 2020 schedule for the Canadian Forces Snowbirds 50th season will be released on December 10, 2019. The season is slated to begin on June 6, 2020.Canadian Snowbirds statement on Facebook
Even if we have to wait a little longer, it’s great to have the team back in the air!