CHANGI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, Singapore --
Billed as Asia’s largest aerospace and defense event, more than 100,000 attendees have the opportunity to witness pure airpower at the 2018 Singapore International Airshow.
The Pacific Air Forces’ F-16 Fighting Falcon Demonstration Team from Misawa Air Base, Japan, is participating in the airshow, Feb. 6-11, to showcase the Viper’s multi-role capabilities.
The biennial airshow is focused on building stronger relations between Singapore and the international community, bringing 50 countries together through a common interest: airpower.
The United States demonstrated its air capabilities through a B-52H Stratofortress flyover and static displays of a C-17 Globemaster III, RQ-4 Global Hawk, E-3B Sentry, KC-135 Stratotanker, P-8 Poseidon, F-35B Lightning II, F-22 Raptor and an F-18 Super Hornet, but Team Misawa’s F-16 was the only U.S. asset to demonstrate its in-air capabilities.
“We are the only Pacific Air Forces’ demo team as well as the longest-running demo in the U.S. Air Force,” said Maj. Richard Smeeding, PACAF F-16 Demonstration Team pilot. “Without our personnel executing their individual jobs, none of our shows would happen.”
Smeeding said their demo team performs in more countries worldwide than any other U.S. demo team.
“I thought the demonstrations were spectacular,” said Hambali Mohammed, a Singapore pilot training cadet. “The best part was the jet went low, fast and the pilot pushed the aircraft hard—harder than I’ve ever seen an F-16 go. It was inspiring for a young pilot like myself to watch.”
Not only was the experience unique for the airshow attendees, but the personnel on the demo team got to see a whole new side of the demo team mission, too.
“It was really cool to get see all the coordination that goes into making a demo performance happen,” said Staff Sgt. Brent Gibson, a 13th Aircraft Maintenance Unit weapons load crewmember. “Normally, as maintenance personnel you don’t get to see every piece of the puzzle when it comes to getting jets in the sky. Going with the demo team gave me the opportunity to see everyone‘s hard work and the effort put into executing one aerial performance.”
Participating in the airshow allowed the U.S. to demonstrate its strong ties with Singapore and continued support for friends and allies in the region.
“All of our demo teams performing these shows play a key role by demonstrating some of the capabilities the U.S. Air Force.” said Col. Chris “Frenchy” Faurot, the Singapore International Air Show 2018 mission commander assigned to Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii. “We give assurance to our allies and partners by showing what our aircraft can do. In the end, the work the Demo Team performs helps to strengthen our relationships in the area and keep the peace in the Indo-Pacific region as a whole.”