Incredible. That’s the only word I can come up with right now. I’ll gather my thoughts for an article later this week. But the Royal Air Force Red Arrows this past weekend at the Air and Water Show in Chicago were simply incredible. They were the most crowd-pleasing – the only ones where people were standing and clapping. They had the best display by far and I didn’t want it to end. I have so many pictures to go through. But here’s a sampling of the best ones from the hundreds I took. The Red Arrows are at the beginning of an 11-week tour of North America, check here to see the schedule. If they’re coming anywhere near you- you must see them. They are amazing.
The Red Arrows Arrive at Gary Airport
The first part of my pictures are from last Wednesday when the Red Arrows arrived at Gary Airport, just outside of Chicago. This was their staging area for the Chicago Air and Water Show. I was invited with the press to have a close-up look (and got lots of great info that will go into my eventual article. When they arrived from Canada, they flew over and then broke up the formation to land one by one.
Photos of the Red Arrows from the Chicago Air and Water Show
I went down on Saturday to see the Red Arrows perform in person, for the first time in my life (I’ve seen them fly past once before during the Diamond Jubilee, but I’ve never seen them perform). I had access to the press area, which was fantastic (thank you to the organizers for arranging access for me!). The weather, however, was not fantastic. It was cloudy and rainy all day, not the best day for aviation pictures! I was lucky – the Red Arrows would be out twice, first before the show started properly to practice, and then later after lunch for their full display. Despite the weather, they managed to do it and it was incredible. Here’s a selection of my best pictures. It was very dark that day, so these had to be heavily edited to add some light.
Final Day – Return to Gary
I didn’t go up to Chicago on the second day – for various reasons – mostly because I didn’t think the weather would allow the air show to continue. But I was wrong (it’s a long drive into Chicago and a production to park and get to the air show). I decided to go back out to Gary Airport as it’s much closer so I would see if I could see them take off and land. I missed the take-off. But I caught them coming back and I got, what I think is my best picture from the whole weekend. One perfect shot. I think I might get this one printed and put on my wall!
A chap on YouTube filmed their whole performance. It’s well worth a watch!