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Thread: Royal Air Force A330MRTT and Tornado GR4 KDOV pics

  1. #1
    Senior Member SengaB's Avatar
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    Royal Air Force A330MRTT and Tornado GR4 KDOV pics

    Greetings,
    I made it down to KDOV to get some shots of the RAF A330MRTT and the 3 Tornado GR4s as they made their way back home from KLSV. They arrived 2 days ago and were to depart yesterday at 10:00am. However, after engine-start and pre-taxi one of the Tornadoes went mechanical and after several hours of waiting the pilots called ground to cancelled the flight plan and said they will be there for the night and will plan on departing the same time tomorrow. This made my first attempt a total failure. Luckily they departed the second day. This same thing happened to me with the UAE Mirages as well a few weeks back!
    The shots were challenge edits as they heat haze was brutal and ruined many of not most shot.

    Today's departure was to be at 10:00am KDOV-LPLA (Azores). However I noticed the planes diverted to CYQX (Gander) I would like to know if one of the Tornadoes had a mechanical issue again and had to divert.

    In my UAF A330/Mirage Dover post someone had asked if the UAF mirages I shot at KDOV were loud and they were not. On the other hand the Tornadoes were extremely loud as I had expected them to me- Very Very impressive and glad to finally get them after building a Model kid of one when I was 6 years old.
    Both types are new for me.

    Regs
    A330MRTT
    ZZ337

    Tornado GR4
    ZA556
    ZA546
    ZA607













    Senga
    Last edited by SengaB; 04-01-2015 at 04:42 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Zee71's Avatar
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    Senga ... Simply outstanding!
    Mark
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  3. #3
    Senior Member SengaB's Avatar
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    Thanks Mark, That Makes 3 A330TRTTs for me now. RSAF, RAF, UAF. I need to get the RAAF next. I'll try to upload 2 vids today after I dissect them. Here is one. After the fighters depart and then 1 minute later the A330s departs. Then the fighters do a 360 fly over the runway they just departed and then meet up behind the A330 that is just 1 or 2 miles ahead and then head east.

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/aviophotog/16822270359/

    Senga
    Last edited by SengaB; 04-02-2015 at 06:13 AM.

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    Senior Member gonzalu's Avatar
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    Good stuff Senga, as always.

    So let me get this straight, the Tornadoes make the trip across the pond in one hop? That's insane that many hours in a very uncomfortable seat without bathroom breaks, nice looking FAs, table service, decent food, etc. I bet the Gander stop was for a potty break
    Manny Gonzalez
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  5. #5
    Senior Member moose135's Avatar
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    Very cool, Senga! Great stuff as always. I'll have to take your word for how loud they are - the last time I saw Tornadoes up close, they were West German, and they were trying to plug into the drogue hanging off our boom.

    Quote Originally Posted by gonzalu View Post
    So let me get this straight, the Tornadoes make the trip across the pond in one hop? That's insane that many hours in a very uncomfortable seat without bathroom breaks, nice looking FAs, table service, decent food, etc. I bet the Gander stop was for a potty break
    It's probably a 7 hour trip, Manny. On a TDY to England back in the day, we helped drag some West German Tornadoes across - we went about two hours out from England, and returned back to RAF Mildenhall, but a couple of other KC-135s were bringing them the rest of the way across. I think they were heading to a Maple Flag exercise in Canada.

  6. #6
    Senior Member SengaB's Avatar
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    Thanks Mark, Manny.

    Manny,
    They make several stops between the UK and Las Vegas spanning several days. Its between 3 and 4 stops.

    About this particular flight.
    I think the Gander arrival was a diversion as they filed to LAPA Lajes. At some point doing my trip home they changed course and went to CYQX. I don't know why but I suspect one of the Tornadoes had a mechanical problem (again)and they were closer to Gander CYQX than LAPA Lajes. I should add that after they departed CYQX and headed back to the UK two of the three Tornadoes were "picked up". They might have left one at CYQX (possibly). This happened with a RAF Eurofighter at LAPA a few months back and they flew a tanker back down a few days later to pick it up after it was fixed.

    John, I know you got some great memories :) So you saw them in the nice Cammo theme. I do wish I could have seen that livery. Yes they were probably some of the loudest fighters I have heard from that "generation" of fighters. I'll try to get the second video up. its Crappy and complete with a fine Fence mesh video up. I still haven't gotten around to cutting it up yet. You can get the idea how loud they woudl have been. In the video I almost missed the fighters as I was so fixated on getting a decent shot of the A330 and did not realize the fighters were already in position much further down the runway that I had expected.

    Senga

  7. #7
    Wow, nice shots Senga! I am like dying to catch one of those Panavia Tornadoes. Hopefully, one of the Holloman AFB based Tornadoes will venture to Andrews AFB for the airshow. Otherwise, was there a National Cargo 744 parked somewhere on the ramp as I have been seeing a couple of scheduled National Cargo 744s on Flightaware but none en-route. I want one of those really bad and I would much rather watch an arrival so I know it's actually coming!

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    Junior Member davegu's Avatar
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    Nice shots Senga! I am lucky enough to see 'Tonka's' often, living on this small island of ours. I have a number of military airfields within a couple of hours drive from home and Doncaster - Sheffield Airport (ex RAF Finingley) is only 7 miles away. Because of the small amount of military airfields in the country, we often get fast jets doing practice approaches at DSA and they fly straight over the top of my house.
    I will be sorry to see these beautiful aircraft get phased out over the next few years as the F-35 comes online.
    Regards
    Dave

    My website: www.donnyradar.co.uk

  9. #9
    Senior Member SengaB's Avatar
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    Thanks Tristatespotting, Dave,

    I just wish The heat haze and the lighting was not as bad as it was. If they had taken off the day before I would have had a slight overcast to keep down the distortion. Can't get clouds, Sun when you need it.

    Tristate,
    Before I moved to NYC in 2002 a few years before that the I was told the RAF Tornadoes would show up at KCCC on long island for air shows and other things. Similarly the RAF would shows up at KIAG for and would be spotted during airshows there as well.

    Dave,
    its can't get any better than the UK. So much activity in such a "small" area. SO many operations go through the UK to come here its like shooting fish in a barrel.

    Senga

  10. #10
    Senior Member moose135's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SengaB View Post
    Before I moved to NYC in 2002 a few years before that the I was told the RAF Tornadoes would show up at KCCC on long island for air shows and other things.
    There was one air show - if you can call it that - at Calverton, somewhere around 2000 or 2001 that I remember. The show was a complete boondoggle, but they did have a Tornado there - it sat down on the far end of the hot ramp, well away from the fence with no way to shoot it, and it sat there the entire day without moving.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Chris S's Avatar
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    Nice catch and great shots of the RAF aircraft down at DOV, Senga !!
    The last time I saw a Tornado fly was back in the mid 90s at one of the Westover shows

    Quote Originally Posted by moose135 View Post
    There was one air show - if you can call it that - at Calverton, somewhere around 2000 or 2001 that I remember. The show was a complete boondoggle, but they did have a Tornado there - it sat down on the far end of the hot ramp, well away from the fence with no way to shoot it, and it sat there the entire day without moving.
    Yeah you're right Moose, it definitely wasn't much of a show out at Calverton back in Sept. 2003,
    and it was tough to get any good shots of the 2 German Tornado aircraft they had on the hot ramp.

  12. #12
    Senior Member megatop412's Avatar
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    That is certainly a very impressive catch, Senga. Not sure we get to talk about Tornadoes on here very often.

  13. #13
    Senior Member SengaB's Avatar
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    John,
    I am sure those were the years then. Its a shame how the potential star of the show is cast into a dark corner and not accessible. I imagine this would have been very frustrating for me if I was there. Its too bad US air shows to get more exotic visitors.

    Senga

  14. #14
    Senior Member moose135's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SengaB View Post
    I am sure those were the years then. Its a shame how the potential star of the show is cast into a dark corner and not accessible. I imagine this would have been very frustrating for me if I was there. Its too bad US air shows to get more exotic visitors.
    For me, the worst thing they did at that show - remember, it was held at Calverton, where Grumman built all of the F-14s, and the show flyers had a big F-14 image image on them, yet somehow they didn't have any F-14s there for the show.

    I do have some old slides of airshows at McGuire, back in the early 80s, with RAF Vulcan bombers and Victor tankers - they had been used during the Falklands war, and stopped in for the show. I think there may have been a Tornado there as well, but I'd have to find the slides and take a look.

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    Moderator mirrodie's Avatar
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    Sweet stuff, Senga!
    And I, I took the path less traveled by
    and that has made all the difference......yet...
    I have a feeling a handle of people are going to be very interested in what I post in the near future.

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