AAD 2006

Held at Ysterplaat Airforce base in Cape Town. I was fortunate to be able to fly down to attend the show. Spent three fantastic days in CPT. Attending & getting a front line position from which to shoot, meant getting to Ysterplaat by 5am followed by a mad dash to the flight line when the gates opened. The weather held out for the duration of the show, with only one day of cold wind. Unfortunately the show was marred by the unfortunate & untimely death of Martin van Straaten,  owner/ pilot of one of the remaining 3 Sasol Tiger sponsored Delphin L39 jets. Following a successful fly past together with the Silver Falcons & ZU-TEE flown by Pierre Gouws, the planes flew out over the bay in a holding pattern for their turn to land. It appears that without warning Martin's plane crashed into the bay. Rescue teams immediately attended the scene, but unfortunately his body was recovered & Martin was pronounced DOA. This is the second fatal crash involving members of this team in the last year. Last Sept I was present when Gabriel & Johnny were killed in a similar crash in Vereeniging. Martin was a highly qualified & experienced pilot & his death will be felt in the community for a long time.
To Martin Van Straaten, may you fly in peace & to his family, fiancÚ & the remaining Tigers out thoughts are with you. SALUTE!
The rest of the show was without incident. I spent the days relaxing in the sun with many fellow photog's. The images (and yes, there are many) on the following pages are representative of the planes that took part. Unfortunately Ysterplaat has not got the best of backgrounds with construction work , Rotanga Junction's Cobra ride etc. cluttering many of the images, but they are still worth sharing with those of you who were not able to attend. I think I'll add a few comments below some of the images as I go.
An absolute highlight was the formation flight of 4 Lightnings (2 had been crated to SA from UK, reassembled & re-certified). As best as I can establish as well, this was the first time that 4 x Lightnings were flown in a "missing man" formation in honour of Martin van Straaten. The Silver Falcons also performed a missing man formation on both days of the public show. This tribute highlighting the great respect the airshow community had for Martin.

Shooting was done with D70 at ISO400, varying between shutter speeds & aperture priority. Lighting, was most unfortunate especially in the morning, with the sun directly head on. From about 3pm the improved dramatically. Lens used, the old faithful Bigma.

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