|After two tragic editions in 2007 and 2009, both ending in lethal accidents, perhaps the main hope for the Radom 2011 airshow was to have a safe show. Fortunately that was the case, even if it was a bit of a close call on Sunday, though many may have missed the moment in question. Combined with nice weather, Radom certainly provided a memorable airshow.
The weather on Saturday was a bit extreme, with blistering sunshine throughout the day, made even worse by the fact the crowd is facing the sun when watching the displays. Sunday saw far more cloud cover, though this had hardly any impact on the displays, the main victims being Patrouille suisse flying their medium show and the Frecce Tricolori sticking to their flat routine. Interestingly, in the latter case, Patrouille de France flew their full programme in almost identical conditions 15 minutes later.
Obviously, for foreign visitors, the main attraction at Radom were the countless Polish aircraft and these were abundant in both the static and flying displays, some tactical displays unique to Radom. Foreign stars were also plentiful, with the Croatian Krila Oluje in addition to the foreign display teams already mentioned, and 3 F-16 solo displays, including the first foreign appearance by Zeus, the Greek F-16 solo display, flying an F-16C with conformal fuel tanks, complete with special livery and firing off lots of flares throughout is routine. Also noteworthy was a strong Czech contingent, particularly as the Slovak National Airdays coincided with Radom.
There was also some industry hardware on display, with the M346, one of the candidates to replace Poland's TS-11 jet trainers, and an S-70 Blackhawk. Other civilian participants flew during the morning, though these participants invariably flew quite far away from the crowd, much further than regulations require.
Watch the complete report above (64 minutes)
With more than 8 hours of flying on both days, Radom offered plenty of action for the large audience. Event organization from the audience's perspective seemed to work quite well, with plenty of catering, easy access and exit and plenty of buses to transport visitors, the show did not cause any unnecessary frustrations for visitors. Certainly a show to keep an eye on if ever you're looking to visit an eastern European event.
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by Chris Janssens
Lay-out and content by Chris Janssens, 2005 - present