RAF Red Arrows announce 2019 North American Tour

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RAF Red Arrows announce 2019 North American Tour

Post by Flightline Uk » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:32 am

The Red Arrows are set to carry out their largest ever tour of North America as they paint the skies of the US and Canada red, white and blue.
Announcing the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team’s historic nine-week programme, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said the Red Arrows would display across the Americas, reaching millions of people and showcasing the very best of British aviation.

He said: “Our Red Arrows fly the flag for Britain across the globe, both in the skies and on the ground, and this tour will not only showcase their teamwork and aviation excellence, but also promote our great nation to billions of people across the world.

“After an incredible year celebrating RAF100, it seems only fitting that the Red Arrows prepare to illuminate the skies of our closest allies in 2019, celebrating and strengthening our incredible relationship with the US.”

The Red Arrows’ return to the US will mark the first significant deployment to North America in a generation, with the team last touring in the country in 1993.

And the start of the tour next year will see the first display the team has put on in the US in a decade, following a short visit by the Red Arrows to the east coast of the US in 2008.

As well as displaying at a range of shows and events, the team will also attend engagements promoting the UK Government’s GREAT campaign, visit local schools, meet with business leaders and showcase the very best of British culture.

The tour is expected to generate £2.5bn in direct foreign investment for the UK.

Air Vice-Marshal Warren James, the senior RAF officer responsible for the Red Arrows, said: “The deployment of the Red Arrows will demonstrate the global reach and capability of the RAF and our continuing support of the United Kingdom’s defence and commerce industries.

"We are very much looking forward to our visit in August and September of 2019.”


The US programme comes after the Red Arrows’ successful 2016 Asia-Pacific and the Middle East tour. The nine-week, 20,000-mile deployment visited 17 countries and drew a global audience of a billion people, with the team displaying in China for the first time.

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Post by Adam » Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:41 am

You just beat me to it, Paul, I was typing this up myself when you posted it. Brilliant, brilliant news!

And I can only hope that it forces a certain few UK shows during that period to think outside the box for once and find something else to draw the punters in. Bournemouth took a much-needed step in that direction this year with the Breitling Jet Team. It will be interesting to see what they come up with - if anything.
Last edited by Adam on Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by AndyMedic » Sun Oct 21, 2018 1:34 pm

ImageRAF22 by Andy Backowski, on Flickr
Check out my current Airshow Photographs here: https://andybackowski.zenfolio.com/f382726257

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Post by RyanS » Sun Oct 21, 2018 2:10 pm

Thanks guys, of course this massive news broke while I was deep asleep! The Red Arrows coming over has been a running joke for years now, but I am particularly excited about the time frame! Maybe no 12 hour road trips to Quebec City for me this time :)

Now we just have to hope that it doesn't fall apart, and figure out where they intend to go.

http://airshowstuff.com/v4/2018/red-arr ... ican-tour/
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Post by RIAT617 » Sun Oct 21, 2018 2:36 pm

I suspect sites like

Abbotsford-
Cleveland -RAF long supporters with visits from the Vulcan and Nimrod back in the day
Chicago
NYC
Atlantic City - possible with visit from RCAF Snowbirds too
Reno
Miramar
a few more sites in Canada
and i suspect flyovers and team visits with longer trip as did the PdF.

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Post by Adam » Sun Oct 21, 2018 2:53 pm

I wonder if they'll try and sort the schedule for the US leg of their season in time for the ICAS Convention? It would certainly be an opportune moment to release it. Leaving it until just a few weeks before the tour begins, as they did in 2016, would be a huge mistake.

And yes, I know the tour is scheduled for August-September, but wouldn't it be amazing if they could leave a week early, in time for the end of AirVenture?

On a different note, I saw a very interesting comment on Twitter pointing out how detrimental this could be for the Scottish Airshow. Ayrshire County Council don't want to fund the event every single year and so a couple of other local authorities are hoping to fund and host the 2019 show instead, the idea being either that it may spawn more airshows (of which Scotland only has two at the moment) or that the Scottish Airshow might become a roving event that rotates around two or three venues. In all probability, the trial for that scheme will take place while the Reds are on tour (the Scottish Airshow is typically early September, although dates and locations for 2019 are still TBA); a show without the Red Arrows could so easily fall flat and cause this whole scheme to be abandoned. That would be very sad indeed.

A major American tour trumps a handful of UK seaside shows, no question. And doubtless many of those seaside shows really need a kick up the backside anyway. I'm just a tad surprised by the timing here. Why Aug-Sep, rather than Sep-Oct, or even May-Jun? August is when the vast majority of big seaside shows are, and it accounts for the bulk of the Red Arrows' yearly audience - easily 50%, likely far more. Furthermore, every single major airshow in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Jersey and Guernsey typically occur in August or September. I expect overall UK airshow attendence is going to be massively down in percentage terms next year - or maybe the RAF will step up its other airshow commitments to fill the gap? No, of course not. That would be a silly idea...

I'm absolutely delighted the Reds are going to the US and Canada though, it's long overdue, and it will be fascinating to see how this plays out on our side of the Atlantic as well. I shall watch this with great interest.
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Post by RyanS » Sun Oct 21, 2018 2:57 pm

If they perform at true airshows, it seems likely they will be at ones already hosting one of the North American teams. The Snowbirds have not put out any 2019 info yet, but here are the relevant sections of the preliminary Blue Angel and Thunderbird schedules:

Blue Angels
July 27-28: Grand Junction Air Show – Grand Junction, CO

August 3-4: Seafair Boeing Air Show – Seattle, WA
August 17-18: 61st Chicago Air And Water Show – Chicago, IL
August 24-25: New York Air Show – Stewart ANG Base, Newburgh, NY
August 31-September 1: OPEN

September 7-8: Spirit of St. Louis Air Show – Chesterfield, MO
September 14-15: OFF WEEK
September 21-22: NAS Lemoore Central Valley Air Show – NAS Lemoore, CA
September 28-29: MCAS Miramar Air Show – MCAS Miramar, CA

October 5-6: California Capital Air Show – Sacramento, CA
October 12-13: San Francisco Fleet Week – San Francisco, CA
Thunderbirds
July 24: Cheyenne Frontier Days – Cheyenne, WY
July 27-28: Milwaukee Air and Water Show – Milwaukee, WI

August 10-11: Abbotsford International Air Show – Abbotsford, BC
August 17-18: Sioux Falls Air Show – Sioux Falls, SD
August 21: Atlantic City Air Show – Atlantic City, NJ
August 24-25: Rochester International Airshow – Rochester, NY
August 31-September 2: Cleveland National Air Show – Cleveland, OH

September 7-8: Grissom Air Reserve Base Air Show – Grissom ARB, IN
September 14-15: National Championship Air Races – Reno, NV
September 21-22: Naval Air Station Oceana Air Show – NAS Oceana, VA
September 28-29: Robins AFB Air Show – Robins AFB, GA

October 5-6: Puerto Rico International Air Show – San Juan, PR
October 12-13: Atlanta Air Show – Hampton, GA
That's not to say this is all of the shows, as the F-22 is treated like a headliner and a few other shows don't have any teams, like Thunder Over Michigan in early August.
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Post by Flightline Uk » Sun Oct 21, 2018 3:38 pm

Most UK shows at least knew of the possibility and the timing of the tour during the late summer. The major UK shows should be OK - many have had the odd occasions in the past when the Reds have been elsewhere. Attendances do dip without the Red Arrows (they are about the only household name on the circuit), but I doubt it will be that massive - the likes of Eastbourne and Bournemouth are still very popular on days without the Reds. It is far more damaging for the small events where the team are the only attraction such as Lyne Regis

The major challenge for organisers is not to have clashes so the remaining RAF display teams are not stretched too thinly. The RAF Events Team and British Air Display Association did advise events not to start bouncing around the calendar in vain attempts to miss the tour dates.

As for where the team are performing, major airshows will no doubt be included but there will be non-airshow events in support of the "GREAT" campaign.

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Post by RyanS » Sun Oct 21, 2018 4:38 pm

Just saw this on a FB comment:
Tom Walsh: Thunder Over Michigan has been aware of this upcoming tour since July. The show has been working with the Embassy in Washington on possible dates for Ypsilanti for the past several weeks. No decision on a schedule as yet, but we have been told the tour will start on the East coast beginning in mid- August.
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Post by Dan Gagnon » Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:28 pm

RyanS wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 4:38 pm
Just saw this on a FB comment:
Tom Walsh: Thunder Over Michigan has been aware of this upcoming tour since July. The show has been working with the Embassy in Washington on possible dates for Ypsilanti for the past several weeks. No decision on a schedule as yet, but we have been told the tour will start on the East coast beginning in mid- August.
This would make sense as there are quite a few mid-west/west coast shows in mid-late September.

I could see Toronto being a major player next year, with it being their 70th anniversary of the show. It would be cool to share with Cleveland, with it being the same weekend. Perhaps doing both shows the whole weekend (if possible) or maybe doing 1 or 2 of the 3 days at , each show site.

London might be a possibility as well, but they don't have dates for their show in September as of yet, and September is stacked with quality shows (St. Louis, Oceana etc)

Definitely super excited to see the Reds again! Maybe some Typhoons can come over too, but that would really mess up UK shows as the Typhoon is like what the Raptor is to North American shows.
Last edited by Dan Gagnon on Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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