U.S. AIR FORCE HERITAGE FLIGHT
The U.S. Air Force Heritage Flight (HF) program presents the evolution of USAF air power by flying today’s state-of-the-art fighter aircraft in close formation with vintage fighter aircraft.
The F-22 Raptor, which is being featured at Air Power Over Hampton Roads, is the most advanced fighter aircraft flying in the world today. The Raptor's combination of stealth, supercruise, maneuverability, and integrated avionics, coupled with improved supportability, represents an exponential leap in warfighting capabilities. The Raptor performs both air-to-air and air-to-ground missions allowing full realization of operational concepts vital to the 21st century Air Force.
The F-22 will be flying with the P-51 Mustang, a long-range, single-seat fighter and fighter-bomber that was first used in World War II and then the Korean War. Built by North
American Aviation, the P-51 was used to escort U.S. Air Force bombers over Germany which helped ensure Allied air superiority in 1944. The aircraft was also in service with Allied air forces in the North African, Mediterranean and Italian theaters and saw some service against the Japanese.
Until jet fighters took over, the P-51 Mustang was the main fighter of the United Nations at the start of the Korean War. The P-51 then became a specialized fighter- bomber. The plane remained in service to some air forces until the early 1980s but many were converted for civilian use – especially air racing and for flying as historic warbird aircraft at air shows.
A Heritage Flight (HF) performance involves a current USAF fighter piloted by an Air Combat Command trained military HF pilot and flown with a historical warbird piloted by a trained and certified civilian HF pilot. The F-22 demo pilot for 2018 is Major Paul "Loco" Lopez. Andrew McKenna will pilot the P-51 used in this year's Heritage Flight at Air Power over Hampton Roads.
The HF formations of modern fighters flying with World War II, Korean, and Vietnam era dramatically display U.S. Air Force air power history and support our Air Force’s recruiting and retention efforts. In 2010, the Air Force Heritage Flight Foundation (AFHFF) was formed to keep this popular program flying.
For more information, visit http://www.airforceheritageflight.org/