The demonstration team based at Langley Air Force Base visited Europe last year to participate at the Royal International Air Tattoo event. Tis year the team will reappear, the F-22 Demo Team will come to the United Kingdom in two years in a row.
This year's Air Tattoo event is a great occasion to see lots of USAF aircafts in the sky and also in the static line of the event, because RIAT's most important theme is the 70th anniversary of the United States Air Force this year. The US Air Force Thunderbirds with its F-16's already confirmed to the event. This year appearance will be the fourth for the F-22 Demonstration Team in the United Kingdom. Besides that, during the Royal International Air Tattoo, lucky visitors will have a chance to see the first heritage display by the F-22 and F-35, the team also participated on Farnborough International Airshow Trade event in the past.
The US Air Force approved the demonstration team in 2007, replacing Air Combat Command's F-15C demonstration team. The first team commander and pilot was Paul "Max" Moga, who performed the demonstration for the 2007 and 2008 seasons. Major David "Zeke" Skalicky was the team's second pilot from 2009-2010, who was followed by Major Henry "Schadow" Schantz (2011-2013), Major John "Taboo" Cummings (2014-2015), and Major Daniel "Rock" Dickinson (2016-Present).
In this year the display pilot of the F-22 Demonstration Team is Maj. Dan Dickinson. It will his second year as a dispaly pilot on the F-22 Raptor aircraft and he is the first pilot to perform two times in a row in Europe.
Maj. Dickinsonleads the 19-member F-22 Demonstration Team, oversees maintenance actions performed on the Lockheed Martin $140 million demo aircraft, and showcases the Raptor's exceptional maneuverability for more than 10 million spectators around the world each year. He is an operational F-22 instructor pilot assigned to the 1st Operations Group, Langley AFB, Virginia. He served as the 325 OSS AFE Flight Commander and later as a 43 FS Flight Commander before being selected to be the Air Combat Command F-22 Demonstration Pilot. He is a seasoned fighter pilot with over 800 F-22 hours.
The Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor is a fifth-generation, single-seat, twin-engine, all-weather stealth tactical fighter aircraft developed for the United States Air Force (USAF). The result of the USAF's Advanced Tactical Fighter program, the aircraft was designed primarily as an air superiority fighter, but also has ground attack, electronic warfare, and signal intelligence capabilities.
It will nice to see the F-22 display in Europe again, with lots of vapor during its high G maneuvering over RAF Fairford Air Base!