Military aircraft poised to steal the show at Warbirds

The Royal New Zealand Air Force Boeing 757 will return to Warbirds Over Wanaka for the first time...
The Royal New Zealand Air Force Boeing 757 will return to Warbirds Over Wanaka for the first time in 12 years. Photo: Supplied
The Warbirds Over Wanaka International Airshow will have its biggest turnout of modern military aircraft this Easter.

Yesterday, it was confirmed  the Royal New Zealand Air Force Boeing 757 would be making a return to the show after a 12-year absence, operational requirements permitting.

Current RNZAF chief Tony Davies flew the B757 in 2004 when the plane made its first appearance at the airshow, and said it was a "great aircraft to fly".

"It was always interesting to talk to people afterwards who had never seen an aircraft type like that put on such a display.  I’m looking forward to today’s pilots getting the same reaction at Wanaka," he said.

Warbirds Over Wanaka general manager Ed Taylor believed the B757 display would be one of his personal "highlights of 2018".

"It is the impressive RNZAF display that brings the crowd to their feet.  The high-speed pass of something so big, so low, is a real showstopper along with seeing the aircraft perform steep turns in the confines of the mountain valley," Mr Taylor said.

The B757 will join a list of aircraft provided by regional air forces, including the American F-16 Fighting Falcon Jets coming from Japan, Australian Hawk Jets and French CASA transport aircraft.

The airshow, celebrating its 30th anniversary, will be held at Wanaka Airport from March 30 to April 1.

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