Red Arrows

Full display sequence 2017

The Red Arrows’ aerobatic display changes each year. On this page, you can see the individual manoeuvres featuring in the 2017 season’s full show.

The first half of the Red Arrows’ display consists of synchronised, formation aerobatics, followed by a more dynamic second half.

Reds 1 to 5 form the front section of the team’s formation, known as Enid, and Reds 6 to 9 make up the rear part, called Gypo. The Synchro Pair, Reds 6 and 7, perform the highly-popular opposition manoeuvres during this latter section of the show. During a display, Red 10 acts as the team’s Supervisor who maintains two-way radio contact with the Team Leader. He also provides the commentary.



Types of display

There are three types of display the Team Leader can elect to fly – full, rolling or flat. To carry out a full, looping, display the base of the cloud must be above 5,500ft to avoid the aircraft entering the cloud at the top of the loop. If the cloud base is less than 5,500ft, but more than 2,500ft, the team will perform the rolling display – substituting wing-overs and rolls for the loops. And when the cloud base is below 2,500ft, the Team will fly the flat display, consisting of a series of flypasts and steep turns.

2018 Events

The display schedule for 2018 is still being confirmed. Keep checking back for updates.

The Red Arrows begin training for the forthcoming season almost as soon as the previous year has ended.

Typically, winter training starts in October, with small groups of three or four aircraft formations.

Each pilot flies three sorties a day, five days a week, and the formations grow in aircraft number as training progresses.

These flights involve a thorough brief, debrief and discussion to ensure safety is paramount and the formations are precise.

One complete cycle consisting of these elements lasts about two hours, usually with a 30-minute flight.

Winter training lasts until mid-March, when the team usually moves overseas to a location with more predictable, settled weather to maximise flying hours and perfect the display. This is known as Exercise Springhawk.

During Springhawk the team is assessed by senior Royal Air Force officers, with the aim of gaining Public Display Authority.

If this is awarded, the Squadron’s pilots change from green coveralls into their famous red flying suits and the ground crew are allowed to wear their royal blue display coveralls.

The season then officially begins and public performances by the Red Arrows are permitted.

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