The latest international participants to confirm their attendance at the Royal International Air Tattoo 2018, joining the international celebration of the Royal Air Force's centenary, are two top-class items from the Swiss Air Force. One of the two Swiss national display teams, the highly acclaimed PC-7 Team, will be joined in the RIAT flying programme by the air arm's F/A-18C Hornet solo fast jet display.
The PC-7 Team flies a nine-ship formation of Swiss-built Pilatus PC-7 Turbotrainers, a single-turboprop basic trainer used by the air force for pilot selection and training purposes. All the pilots practise for and perform the team's displays in their spare time - in their 'day jobs', they are front-line F/A-18 Hornet fighter pilots from the Swiss Air Force's three squadrons operating the type. Nevertheless, they put on performances of the highest level when it comes to smoothness, elegance and quality.
The solo F/A-18C Hornet demonstration, meanwhile, is among the best from a jet fighter on the European circuit. Three squadrons in the Swiss Air Force operate the twin-engined, multi-role type, which has air policing as its primary function in Switzerland.