(This was originally posted in Times Of India by Sandip Dighe)
The Suryakiran Aerobatic Team of the Indian Air Force (IAF) on Saturday performed during their air show, which was a part of the ‘Swarnim Vijay Varsh’ celebrations, at the Air Force Station in Lohegaon. The team consists of 13 ace fighter pilots of the IAF and about 200 technicians. The team, whose motto is ‘Always the Best’, had also undertaken low-level aerobatic displays at the station. The figure created in the sky by the aircraft in smoke pods was the testimony to its high-level skill of flying.
“It requires rigorous training and hundreds of hours of flying practice to achieve the precision in maneuvers and aerobatic variations. It is being done with a speed of 600-700 kpmh,” said an officer of the team. The crowd was enthralled with their hair-raising maneuvers with their aircraft. They watched the nine aircraft skimming overhead in different directions and then coming together as close as five meters away from each other audience witnessed an air show performed by the ‘Sarang’ display team with their “Dhruv” advanced light helicopters. The crossing of the helicopters from a very close range left the gathering thrilled.
The famous “Air Devils” skydivers team of the IAF jumped from a height of 8,000 feet. They landed on a hard surface without a fall, displaying their supreme skill in sky diving. Former IAF chief Air Chief Marshal PV Naik, Southern Army Commander Lt Gen JS Nain, senior IAF were present in the audience.