Wildcats to take to the skies for Norfolk Day

Willie Cruickshank. Picture: Wildcats Aerobatics

Willie Cruickshank. Picture: Wildcats Aerobatics - Credit: Wildcats Aerobatics

They're one of only a handful of teams in Europe who can perform the daredevil, seemingly gravity defying, aerobatics they do.

Old Buckenham, Norfolk. Old Buckenham Air Show 2017 - Wildcats Aerobatic Display Team. Picture: MARK

Old Buckenham, Norfolk. Old Buckenham Air Show 2017 - Wildcats Aerobatic Display Team. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE - Credit: Mark Bullimore/Mark Bullimore Ph

And now, as they take to the skies for their 100th display, the Wildcat Aerobatics team will be doing so on Norfolk Day at the Old Buckenham Air Show.

Formed in 2010 by Al Coutts and Willie Cruikshank Wildcat Aerobatics are Norfolk's only aerobatic formation team.

A rare breed, together the duo perform some of the most demanding aerobatic manoeuvres the laws of physics allow, all while travelling at 150mph.

Just one of the highlights on the line-up for this year's airshow, which will take place on July 27-28, the team's return to the event will be their first since 2017.

The Wildcats Aerobatics team will be displaying at Old Buckenham Airshow Picture: Denise Bradley

The Wildcats Aerobatics team will be displaying at Old Buckenham Airshow Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: copyright: Archant 2014


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Performing twice over the weekend, during their shows, the Wildcat pilots experience gravitational forces of up to 6G, and at times are less than six feet apart from one another.

Mr Coutts, who has been flying since the age of 19, said: "It's serendipitous that we find ourselves performing our 100th display at Old Buckenham on Norfolk Day, it's the ultimate celebration of this milestone to be performing to our home crowd."

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Mr Cruickshank added: "As Wildcat Aerobatics we performed our first public display at Old Buckenham on 24 June 2012 so it's a welcome twist of fate that we are returning to our roots for our 100th performance.

"Old Buckenham Airfield has been like a second home to Wildcat so it's always felt extra-special to display there in front of a home crowd; I'm sure this year will be no different."

Norfolk Day will return for a second year. Picture: Archant

Norfolk Day will return for a second year. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

Matt Wilkins, the manager of Old Buckenham Airfield, said: "Having been able to watch the story of the Wildcats from their first display onwards has been a wonderful privilege.

"Being able confirm their return to the county's only airshow is fabulous. However the fact that their 100th display will also coincide with Norfolk Day makes the welcome return of our friends Willie and Al an unmissable part of the celebration of all things Norfolk," he said.

Norfolk Day 2019, will take place on Saturday July 27, details of all events and those taking part will be revealed in this newspaper, online in the run up to the day.

- To get involved email norfolkday@archant.co.uk, tweet @norfolk using #NorfolkDay or visit the Norfolk Day Facebook group.

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