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RAF100

From Smoky Green:

Jill and I watched highlights of the celebration in London today. It was my great privilege to fly with you. Congratulations on each of your contributions to 100 eventful years of service to your country and the world. All Best, Smoky
IV(R) Sqn RAF 100 Flypast

IV(R) Sqn RAF 100 Flypast

IV(R) Sqn RAF 100 Flypast

IV(R) Sqn RAF 100 Flypast

Photos: Ian Black @BlickyIan

5 comments to RAF100

  • Geoff Quick

    HI Smoky,It was a great privilege to support you from the RIC and to be with you when you were dined out. Although we tried to reach you the job of recce was to just take pictures of the landscape -not to take half of it back to Gutersloh with you from the field! Happy days!

  • | Although we tried to reach you the job of recce was to just take pictures of the landscape -not to take half of it back to Gutersloh with you from the field!

    Is there more to this story?

  • Geoff Quick

    Well O.K., as it was a long time ago now. We had done a site move out in the field. Smokey was first off of the “new” Mexi plank strip. As we watched we could see a bow wave of planking build up in front of the undercarriage, which seemed to us goofers to be greatly slowing down the acceleration from normal. It was a long way down the track when he went to the 70deg ( IIRC?) nozzle stop. Consequently the aeroplane was very close to the trees at the end of the strip when it eventually got airborne. To our horror Smokey disappeared out of our view into the trees and the crashing of breaking branches could even be heard over the Pegasus. Thankfully he then emerged out from out of the top of the tree line and flew way low, safely back to Gutersloh. The leading edges of the flying surfaces were apparently a sight to behold and the gossip was that the Harrier was going to be Cat 5’d.

  • bobmarston

    The strip went downhill, giving a sort of negative ski-jump effect. During the site move, the aircraft and pilots were dispersed to other sites in the Bergen-Horne training area. We flew in after the first tasks of the morning, and had a brief look at the site. I was the first to take off, just clearing the trees. Smoky was less lucky. Hearing his predicament, I diverted yet again after my task. The remaining jets were refuelled to get them out safely, and the site was abandoned.

    Last week, I spent 5 days in Horse Guards Parade with a GR3 in IV(AC) Squadron colours among the impressive static aircraft display. The final day, July 10th, was tremendous, with The Queen attending a centennial service in Westminster Abbey, a reception in Horse Guards Parade, the wonderful flypast, and a Royal visit to the static display.

  • bobmarston

    The remaining jets were defuelled to give a shorter takeoff roll and steeper climbout.

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