On a terrifically hot Sunday morning; you could have forgiven this aviation reporter for thinking and hoping for the best Waddington show for some years. It was not until walking along the display line that I realised this was not going to be the case.
Scrubbed from the line-up from the word go were the BBMF (and so subsequently the EuroFighter/SPitfire pair), WWI Display Team and Army Air Corps Historic Flight. Thankfully the Vulcan got all of it's certificates to display - even though it operated directly from Brize Norton instead of flying into it's "home" of Waddo. With the winds being very strong on Sunday the RAF Falcon Parachute team also, understandably, had their display cut. So with an hour slot's worth off the menu - the fear was high for a very drawn out and lack lustre show.
Somehow, probably with the aid of good weather, this was not the case and the RAF put on a creditable display - albeit with a significant amount of help from the Czech Air Force.
The Turkish Starz display team put on a wonderful display that pushes the Red Arrows for originality and excitement. The Czech SAAB Gripen was an undoubted star winning a display awar for its polished and well coreographed display. With more role demos and use of pyrotechnics than previously seen at Waddington the show definately picked itself up. The Vulcan bombing run, the Chinook RV pick-up, Harrier GR.9, 2xTornados and (of course) the Battle Of Britain display sequence made the show quite a spectacle.
The static display could be more condensed with, what seemed, fewer participants than ever - the amount of walking required was needlessly long.
Overall a good show with good weather; but it left a taste in the mouth that says "more could be done" to make this one of the biggest shows in the country.