Display details have been released for the Red Arrows' 2018 season.
Their 54th season is also the Royal Air Force’s centenary year, and displays are expected to be staged across the United Kingdom, with the chance for millions to enjoy the team’s dynamic shows from May to September.
The team is planning to display with its trademark nine aircraft formation for the RAF100 year.
To enable this to happen, Squadron Leader Mike Ling is re-joining the Squadron, to fly in the Red 3 position for the season.
Sqn Ldr Ling will cover for Flight Lieutenant David Stark, while he recuperates from injuries sustained in an incident at RAF Valley in March, which also led to the death of engineer Corporal Jonathan Bayliss.
The magnificent nine will wing their way to the north west on July 6 for the Southport Airshow, and then will return on Sunday August 12 for the Blackpool Airshow - but will only fly one date this year instead of the usual two.
Wing Commander Andrew Keith, Officer Commanding, Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, said: “Preparations continue for the Red Arrows’ 2018 season, when the team will play its part in marking the Royal Air Force’s centenary year and aims to inspire all those who see our displays.
The Red Arrows begin training for the forthcoming season almost as soon as the previous year has ended.
Typically, winter training starts in October, with small groups of three or four aircraft formations.
Each pilot flies three sorties a day, five days a week, and the formations grow in aircraft number as training progresses.
These flights involve a thorough brief, debrief and discussion to ensure safety is paramount and the formations are precise.
One complete cycle consisting of these elements lasts about two hours, usually with a 30-minute flight.
Displays are subject to any pending site surveys, weather and other operational changes, which can occur right up to a scheduled performance. Some displays may be added or changed as the season progresses. All display times are subject to alteration.