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EAA AirVenture Oshkosh RSS FeedQuality crop of warbirds
By Frederick A. Johnsen, EAA AirVenture Today
July 26, 2009 - Oshkosh, Wisconsin - From a thundering formation of T-28 Trojan trainers powering through aerobatic maneuvers to a friendly Canadian invasion, variety is key to this year’s warbird offerings. Warbirds of America Executive Director Bill Fisher uses a rule of thumb that says twice as many warbirds fly to AirVenture as the number that preregister, and this early in the week he is forecasting about 350 arrivals will make that math good before next Sunday. “This year we may not have the quantity, but we have the quality,” Fisher said. That’s more than enough big iron to satisfy die-hard enthusiasts.

As part of the Canadian aggregate at AirVenture 2009 celebrating 100 years of Canadian wings, a masterful Avro Lancaster heavy bomber from the Canadian Warplane Heritage will join a Hawker Hurricane, a Supermarine Spitfire, and a hulking-big single-engine Lysander.

Pre-registered is a Douglas A-4 Skyhawk jet; already on the field by Saturday was a newly refurbished side-by-side T-37 decked out as the similar A-37 attack jet in evocative South Vietnamese air force markings.

As many as 40 T-28 Trojan trainers may participate in this year’s AirVenture, including a mass arrival set for Monday, Fisher said. The Trojans are gathering to honor the 60th anniversary of the T-28, a beefy tricycle-gear trainer that also served as a ground-attack warplane in Southeast Asia. Set for Wednesday is an aerobatic formation performance by several T-28 pilots calling themselves the Trojan Horsemen, Fisher said.

The always-popular Warbirds in Review sessions has 13 sessions scheduled:

  • Monday, July 27: 10 a.m., F4U Corsair with Blacksheep Squadron pilot Lt. Col. Jim Hill; 1 p.m., PT-19 and PT-26 trainers with Herb Carper, Jack Hibbits, and Paul Poberezny
  • Tuesday, July 28: 10 a.m., P-40 and Hawker Hurricane with Vintage Wings of Canada; 1 p.m., A-4 with Paul Wood and T.R. Swartz
  • Wednesday, July 29: 10 a.m., T-28 with Jack Drummond, Ed Gunter, and Bob Hoover; 1 p.m., P-51B and P-51D Old Crow with Bud Anderson, Jack Roush, and Jim Hagedorn
  • Thursday, July 30: 10 a.m., P-51 Red Tail representing Tuskegee Airmen with Brad Lang and Charles McGee; 1 p.m., Luftwaffe ace Günther Rall
  • Friday, July 31: 10 a.m., Grumman Wildcat and North American SNJ-5 with Chuck Downey, Mike Gillian, and Mike Murphy; 1 p.m., T-38 with astronaut Joe Engle
  • Saturday, August 1: 10 a.m., P-47 Thunderbolt with Col. Robert “Shorty” Rankin of the 56th Fighter Group; 1 p.m., P-51 Mustangs with Bill and Buck Patillo and Bob Baker
  • Sunday, August 2: 10 a.m., P-51 Quicksilver with Bill and Scott Yoak

FUTURE AIRVENTURE DATES: 2014: July 28-Aug. 3; 2015: July 20-26; 2016: July 25-31; 2017: July 24-30
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