Tag Archives: Airshow

Watch the One-And-Only Svetlana Showing Off Over Russia

Svetlana Kapanina

      Svetlana exits her plane after a show.

Kapanina was born on December 28, 1968 in Shchuchinsk,  Kazakhstan.   And, now at 50, she remains active in the European and American Air Show circuit.

She dedicated herself to a number of different sports at school and always enjoyed motorcycles – and  other motor vehicles, as well. She enrolled at medical school in Tselinograd, where she graduated in medical support sciences. She started flying at 19, in 1988, in a Sukhoi Su-26M3,  (see below right) while working as a technician at the Kurgan Sports Aviation Club.

The Sukhoi S-26M in which Svetlana learned aerobatics.

By 1991 she was already an instructor pilot at DOSAAF‘s (Volunteer Society for Cooperation with the Army, Aviation, and Navy) Irkutsk Club, and then went back to Kurgan. In 1991, she became a member of the Russian national aerobatic team. In 1995 she graduated from Kaluga Aeronautical  Technical School.

She is now lives in Moscow with her husband and two children.

in aerobatics Kapanina was World Aerobatic Champion in the women’s category in 1996, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2011 and has won the title more times than any other pilot in that (women’s) category.  In addition, she was overall World Air Games Champion in 1997 and 2001.

Russian President, Vladimir Putin, poses with Svetalna after awarding her National Order of Courage

Together with Mikhail Mamistov and Oleg Spolyansky, she won the team gold medal in the 16th FAI European Aerobatic Championships in 2008 in Hradec Králové (Czech Republic). She placed fourth overall and was best female participant.

In 1997, she received the Paul Tissandier Diploma by the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI).  In 2005 she was awarded the Sabiha Gökçen Medal[2] and the Centenary Medal by the FAI. She was awarded Russia’s Order of Courage by President Vladimir Putin on December 22, 2014 (see photo immediately above to the left), just 6 days before her 46th birthday.

Watch Svetlana run through one of her Airshow routines over her home country, after greeting the crowd over the loudspeakers.  This video is about 17 minutes long.  Turn your sound up and go to full screen to fully appreciate the excellent high-resolution videography.

And also, below, watch her airplane cavorting through the sky with her hallmark precision in one of her World Aerobatic Competitions.  You will witness Svetlana performing some extremely difficult manuevers with astounding accuracy. It’s a short clip, only 3:57 in length.  Like an accomplished Prima Donna ballerina, this woman aviator may make these manuevers look easy, but they are, as you might expect, extraordinarily difficult – often involving Svetlana pulling fairly severe positive and negative “G’s” (Gravity Forces).

VIDEOS: Basic Training in the new T6A USAF Jet Prop Trainer

Thanks to our friends at FIGHTER SWEEP for this short (1:15)  video (immediately under the static photo of the plane parked on the ramp) of the new USAF & Navy T-6A Texan II Jet-prop trainer at work plying the clouds. The Raytheon Aircraft-built Texan II is a single-turbo prop engined, two-seat primary trainer, used to teach basic flying skills to Air Force and Navy pilots. 

The aircraft is fully aerobatic and features a pressurized cockpit with an anti-G system, ejection seat and an advanced avionics package with sunlight-readable liquid crystal displays, or as they are more commonly known, a full “Glass Panel.” It is the military trainer version of Raytheon’s Beech/Pilatus PC-9 Mk II.This trainer was first featured on our site some four (4) years ago.  One of its early test pilots was none other than our own FASF Advisor, Patty Wagstaff of Florida, Air Show and International Aerobatic competition fame.

Texan II on Ramp at Vance AFB.

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And, immediately below, is another (4:15 long) video of the Texan II in action – Practicing formation and aerobatic work. The lead female pilot using the cockpit GoPro camcorder is Air Force pilot, Courtney McCallan.

And, below, another T6-Texan II training clip, 3:10 in length.

Below is another video, but this time of the original WWII – Korean Conflict Basic Air Force and Navy Trainer, the North American T6, which was designated the SNJ by the Navy.  The Canadians and British called it the “Harvard.” The Basic Trainer was conventionally powered.  This video is 5:26 in length.  This is the airplane in which your Editor did his basic training in the USAF.

Below is a 3:29 long video using another HD Go-Pro camcorder taking the cockpit view during airshow maneuvers in Germany.  Notice the control stick is the British type with a small ring at the top of the stick.  This is the kind of stick, called a “Spade Stick” found in both the Super-marine Spitfires and Hurricanes fighters that successfully fought the Germans during the Battle of Britain in WWII.

Below is the 3rd phase of flight training at Vance AFB – the class’ final video summary of their year training to be USAF Pilots.  The full video was class (student) produced. Show is 5:30 long.  Gives a good insight to what lies in store for USAF Pilot students in their first year of Pilot Training.  Includes typical student off hours recreation activities and finally the step up to flight training in the T-38 “Talon” aircraft.

T6 Texan in action.

Time to fly! Row of Texans at the ready.