|Baker's Sesquicentinnial includes T-6 Warbird flyover|
|The Press - Features|
|Written by Kelley Lannigan|
|Thursday, 22 September 2011 08:48|
Four planes from the T-6 Warbirds team, which is affiliated with the Leeward Air Ranch in Ocala, will be flying in formation as part of Baker County’s Sesquicentennial celebration this Saturday.
The antique planes are maintained by pilots who are specially trained in formation flying and who routinely perform for Veteran’s Day parades, festivals, funerals and other occasions.
There are 500 flyable T-6 planes, which are also known as “Texans” because so many were produced in Dallas during the 1940s.During WWII the planes were used as bombers, strafers and patrol craft but their primary function was to train hundreds of aviators and conduct spotting missions. They also carried out post-strike inspections to access damage.
Being slower and heavier than other planes, they were ideal for spotting enemy targets for jets to accurately deliver their ordnance.“It takes a great deal of discipline to fly in formation,” said Rick Hosking, who will be piloting one of the antique training planes when he and his team make two passes timed with specific events at the celebration. Spectators will witness the Diamond Formation, commonly performed at air shows as well as the stunning Missing Man formation performed to honor a person who has died.
According to Mr. Hosking, he and the other pilots, who all personally maintain their aircraft, have a special passion for the T-6 planes.
“These planes have souls,” said he said. “They have a presence and character that is missing from modern aircraft.”
|Last Updated on Friday, 23 September 2011 08:06|