Thousands to look skyward for the fighter plane festooned Foynes Air Show
More than 15,000 aviation enthusiasts will gather along the shores of the Shannon Estuary in West Limerick for the Foynes Air Show this Sunday.
Authentic WWII aircraft, Aer Lingus' first airplane, modern fighter jets and one of the largest search and rescue (SAR) training exercises ever undertaken in Ireland are among the highlights of the second annual show which is being hosted by Foynes Flying Boat & Maritime Museum, the historic departure point for Ireland's first transatlantic air crossings.
The Foynes Air Show will also feature aircraft displays from across Europe, along with some of the world’s top aerobatic pilots.
The event opens at 1pm with the Irish Air Corps, Naval Service (LÉ Samuel Beckett), Irish Coastguard, and SAR teams from all over the country carrying out a massive sea, land and air exercise.
Among the aircraft taking to the skies over West Limerick and the Shannon Estuary will be a Russian Mini MiG, authentic World War II aeroplanes, a Hawker Hunter fighter, a P51 Mustang and James Bond's BD-5 Micro-Jet.
Meanwhile, Aer Lingus’ first plane, the Iolar, will be flying in formation for one of the first times ever at a public display with three de Havilland Chipmunks in Air Corps colours.
The Air Show will also feature the world's only formation wingwalking display team, The Breitling Wingwalkers who will perform a sequence of formation loops and rolls while wingwalkers perform acrobatics on the wings.
The event, which continues until 6pm, will also feature live music, food stalls and children's entertainment.
Organisers say that Park and Ride services will be provided throughout the event to enhance access to and from the Air Show site
The Foynes Air Show was first held in 2014 when the Foynes Flying Boat & Maritime Museum marked the 75th anniversary of the first transatlantic commercial passenger flight that took place to the Flyingboat base, located 23 miles from Limerick City.
Aircraft taking part in the 2015 Foynes Air Show include:
P51 Mustang (Ferocious Frankie) - This aircraft has fought in WWII, starred in Hollywood blockbusters and come 2nd in the Reno Air Races (without modification) having narrowly been beaten by a heavily modified, hugely more powerful machine.
BD5 - Made famous in the opening sequence of the James Bond film, Octopussy, the BD5 is a single-seat homebuilt aircraft created in the late 1960s by US aircraft designer Jim Bede
Sukhoi Su-26 - A single-seater aerobatics plane from the former Soviet Union, flown by one of Ireland’s top aerobatic pilots and engineers Dave Bruton
Hawker Hunter - A UK jet fighter flown by highly experienced former RAF Harrier pilot and Airbus Captain Andy Hill
Christen Eagle - Described as a true sports car of the sky, the 2-seat Eagle flown by Andrew Fenton will perform aerobatics
CAP 231 – Top Aerobstic Pilot Eddie Goggins “The Flying Dentist” returns to Foynes to fly an aircraft designed for competition aerobatics
Aviatika-MAI-890 (Mini-MiG) – 21 year old Pilot Harry Humphreys will fly his Aviatika-MAI-890, a pod-and-boom, pusher configuration biplane designed and built by the Moscow Aviation Institute (MAI) in Russia in the 1980s
RV4/8 - UK-based Team Raven will perform a 5-ship RV4/8 Aerobatic formation display
Vans RV7 - Gerry Humphreys and Eddie Goggins, known collectively as AerDynamics, are the first ever Irish civilian aerobatic formation team and will be flying the versatile Vans RV7 and the Cap 231 in a unique display of low level formation aerobatics and exciting head-on passes.