The North American P-51 Mustang
P-51 Mustang at GML 2007
The GML 2007 Airshow
story by Curtis Fowles,   photos by Curtis Fowles and Chris Luvara

Geez, the gathering was huge, but there was also an airshow ... and a good one! The cool part about this show is that it featured the P-51 Mustang. Single-ship demos, the Horseman, Heritage Flights and the P-51 #51 flight were all part of the show.

The jet-jocks got there time as well with the F-16, F-15 and the F-22. They even had some aerobatics routines from some well-known airshow pilots and groups, but I have to admit I was not paying much attention to them because there was too much P-51 stuff to do.

GM7_0729t.jpg GM7_0746t.jpg GM7_0769t.jpg GM7_0798t.jpg GM7_0813t.jpg GML_1153et.jpg GML_1170et.jpg GML_1182dt.jpg GML_1187t.jpg GML_1197t.jpg GML_1224t.jpg GML_1232dt.jpg GML_1249dt.jpg GML_1279t.jpg GML_1454t.jpg GML_1513t.jpg GML_1515t.jpg GML_1518dt.jpg

Single ship P-51 demos were Lee Lauderback, Patty Wagstaff for the WASPS and Kermit Weeks showing off his red tail for a tribute to the Tuskeegee Airmen. Jim Beasley and Ed Shipley combined for the famous "Horseman" show. Take a look at the Horseman video helmet cam on and you will see just how good these guys are.

The Horseman is a routine that everyone needs to see. It is that good - smooth flying in the finest WWII fighter, the P-51 Mustang. If you did not get a chance to see it. You can watch some videos at airshowbuzz.

GML_1523t.jpg GML_1561t.jpg GML_1590dt.jpg GML_1618dt.jpg GML_1633dt.jpg GML_1660dt.jpg GML_1664dt.jpg GML_1694dt.jpg GML_1705t.jpg GML_1708t.jpg GML_1712t.jpg GML_1719t.jpg GML_1742t.jpg GML_1743t.jpg GML_1750t.jpg GML_1759t.jpg GML_1774t.jpg GML_1790t.jpg GML_1973t.jpg GML_2062t.jpg

The USAF Thunderbirds performed their awesome show and the USAF Demo Teams also got into it. The F-16 Figthing Falcon, F-15 Eagle and your newest USAF fighter, the F-22 Rapter. The Raptor is simply an amazing aircraft. Thrust vectoring can put the aircraft through stuff that will have you shaking your head like loops that look like flips. With its stealth technology and its awesome speed and turning capabilities, enemy fighters do not have a chance.

After each jet demo, a Heritage Flight with one, two or three P-51 Mustangs was formed and flew for the crowd. One of the finest Heritage Flights I have seen was the F-22 Rapter surrounded by three P-51 Mustangs.

Saturday, they launched a twenty-ship flight that was spelled out "51" in the skies over Rickenbacker Airport. That sounded sooooo nice. Sunday was going to be the massive 51 P-51 flight, but it was scrubbed. I guess there were not enough formation-qualified pilots on hand or something like that. So there was a bit of a let down and we "only" got to see a twenty-ship flight and then the number "51" flight of twenty P-51s.

Great show!

GML_2086t.jpg GML_2124t.jpg GML_2154t.jpg GML_2199t.jpg GML_2238t.jpg GML_2274t.jpg GML_2290t.jpg GML_2313t.jpg GML_2317t.jpg GML_2370t.jpg GML_2486t.jpg GML_2510t.jpg GML_2538t.jpg GML_JIM7003wt.jpg GML_JIM7011wt.jpg GML_JIM7091wt.jpg GML_JIM7110wt.jpg GML_JIM7258wt.jpg GML_JIM7284wt.jpg