|Team RV's 12-ship aircraft formation will fly over Oshkosh for the first time on Monday.
Team RV, the world's largest air show team that combines precision formation flying and formation aerobatics, will make its first EAA AirVenture appearance at the opening day air show on Monday, then again on Wednesday. The daily AirVenture air show is presented by Rockwell Collins.
Team RV members fly the RV kit aircraft from Van's Aircraft, the most popular amateur-built aircraft in the world with more than 7,000 currently in the air. As the RV aircraft are built by individuals, no two are exactly alike, and the multitude of paint schemes creates unmatched color swaths across the sky.
"Team RV is changing the face of air shows throughout the country with its unique and exciting performance," said Jim DiMatteo, EAA's vice president of AirVenture features and attractions. "The team's appearance is noteworthy as Van's Aircraft founder Dick VanGrunsven will be honored during AirVenture 2012 for his contributions to sport aviation."
In fact, on Monday AirVenture celebrates the 40th anniversary of Van's RV aircraft with a salute to its founder, Dick VanGrunsven.
Team RV consists of 12 aircraft that are capable of speeds in excess of 200 mph and gravitational forces of up to 6g's. The team flies tight formations of recognizable shapes and carries out difficult rejoins within the aerobatic box at show center. Its four-ship aerobatic wing integrates diamond loops, Cuban-eights, line abreast hammerheads, barrel rolls, and more. Back on the ground, all ships salute the audience with a formation pivot turn and full smoke.
"Our routine requires intense concentration, highly developed stick and rudder skills, and complete trust in fellow wingmen," said Mike "Kahuna" Stewart, Team RV founder and flight lead. "The reward of carrying out an action-packed performance with multiple aircraft can only be attained as a result of the passion and dedication of all team pilots."
Stewart started Team RV in 2002, and since then the team has evolved to a 12-man group that now headlines national air shows throughout the eastern United States. It has opened for the Blue Angels, Thunderbirds, and Snowbirds. Team RV members also took part in the 2007 and 2009 world record flights for the largest civilian formation ever recorded, both at Oshkosh, when more than three dozen RVs flew in formation over the AirVenture grounds.