CF-18 Hornet from 409 Tactical Fighter Squadron. (Photo: Mike Kaehler, RCAF Historian)
It’s jet season in the Comox Valley.
First came the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, who are currently training out of 19 Wing Comox and are here until May 26th.
Now, the base is welcoming back the CF-18 Demonstration Team, which is also doing its annual spring training out of 19 Wing all of next week.
Public affair officer, Captain Rachel Brosseau, explains how the team is made up.
“There is just the one pilot that’s a part of the CF-18 demonstration team and there’s also the support team. There are two technician teams, one for the west region and one for the east region so there are four technicians on each team.”
Captain Daniel Deluce will be flying the CF-18 in the area starting Sunday until May 24th.
During that period, you can expect to see the jet in the skies above the valley, along with associated noise.
Brosseau says Deluce is excited to be coming to 19 Wing.
“He’s really looking forward to it. He was supposed to be the dem team’s pilot last year but due to COVID the season got cancelled. So he’s really looking forward to getting up in the air and putting on some performances and helping inspire some other people from throughout Canada.”
National Defence says these training flights are carefully planned and closely controlled to ensure public safety at all times and are subject to weather and operational requirements.
In order to follow public health measures, you’re asked not to come to 19 Wing to watch him practice.
This also includes any other traditional viewing areas around the base including Air Force Beach and Heritage Air Park.
You can follow the team’s social media accounts for a look into its spring training progress and for opportunities to connect virtually.
While in the valley, the CF-18 Demo Team will be following provincial and federal health measures including wearing masks, frequent hand washing, social distancing, and will limit their movements in the community as much as possible.
All team members were tested for COVID before leaving for the Comox Valley.