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RNZAF Black Falcons

This page has information about the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s aerobatic display team, the Black Falcons 2023-2024 air display season.

AC3Q5165 credit Gavin Conroy

Credit: Gavin Conroy

The Black Falcons is provided by the Central Flying School, and team members are all instructors with either the Central Flying School (who train new flying instructors and maintain flying instruction standards across the Air Force) or No. 14 Squadron (who train new pilots).  The team practices and displays are all done in addition to their regular day-to-day duties.

What are you looking for?

Five ship Texan aircraft flying in formation.

Display Schedule

Displays are subject to weather conditions and operational requirements. Event times are approximate due to weather conditions and air traffic.
Visit the team Facebook page for all the latest information. 

Date 

Time

Event 

Location

19 Jan 24 1345 Walsh Memorial Scout Flying School Matamata Aerodrome
19 Jan 24 1830 Friday Night Falcons Main Beach, Mount Maunganui
20 Jan 24 1315 Classic Flyers Aero Day Tauranga Airport
20 Jan 24 1820 T20 Black Clash (Flypast only) Bay Oval International Cricket Ground, Tauranga
21 Jan 24 1213 Taupo Historic Grand Prix Taupo International Motorsport Park, Taupo
09 Feb 24 1100 Tāwhaki National Aerospace Centre (Flypast only)  Tāwhaki National Aerospace Centre on Kaitorete Spit
09 Feb 24 1720 Burt Munro Challenge Oreti Beach, Invercargill
10 Feb 24 1130 Dunedin St Kilda Beach, Dunedin
10 Feb 24 1635 Kathmandu Coast to Coast The Pier, New Brighton Beach, Christchurch
16-18 Feb 24 16 Feb 1930
17 Feb 1245
18 Feb 1430
Napier Art Deco Napier Soundshell, Marine Parade, Napier
24 Feb 24 1200 Americarna The Wind Wand, New Plymouth
24 Feb 24 1230 Egmont A&P Show (Flypast only) Egmont Showgrounds, Hawera
02 Mar 24 1300 Southland A&P Show (flypast only, not a full show). View details below for the full flypast route.  Donovan Park, Invercargill
03 Mar 24 CANCELLED Karoro Beach, Greymouth  Best view will be in the vicinity of the Merrick Street Beach access.
14-15 Mar 24   Central Districts Field Days Manfield Park, Feilding 
16 Mar 24    Caroline Bay Rock and Hop Caroline Bay, Timaru
17 Mar 24   Nelson TBC
29 - 31 Mar 24   Warbirds over Wanaka Wanaka Airport, Wanaka
21 Apr 24   ITM Taupo Super 400 Taupo International Motorsport Park, Taupo

 

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Meet the team

Falcon 1: Squadron Leader Stuart Anderson

Stuart joined the RNZAF in 2005 and after graduation from pilot training served with No. 3 Squadron at Ohakea, flying the Sioux and Iroquois helicopters. During subsequent tours at Pilot Training Squadron, Central Flying School, No. 3 and 14 Squadrons and Flying Training Wing Headquarters, Stuart has delivered flight instruction on the Airtrainer, Texan and A109. As a former RNZAF Historic Flight Commander (predecessor of the Air Force Heritage Flight of New Zealand), Stuart flew the Tiger Moth and Harvard and his RNZAF display flying experience includes seasons with both the Red Checkers and Black Falcons and as solo display pilot for the Airtrainer and Harvard. Currently the Standardisation Officer at Central Flying School, Stuart hopes that the 2024 Black Falcons display inspires the next generation of aviators by demonstrating the skills and capabilities of the RNZAF.

Falcon 2: Flight Lieutenant AJ Quinn

AJ joined the RNZAF in 2011 and completed pilot training in 2014 where he was then posted to No. 3 Squadron. He spent the first three years of his flying career piloting the A109 helicopter before being seconded to No. 18(B) Squadron, RAF, to fly Chinook helicopters. During his three year tour of duty in the UK, AJ conducted multiple exercises in Europe and the United States before deploying to Mali to operate Chinooks in support of French counter-insurgency operations in Western Africa. AJ is currently serving as a flying instructor at 14 Squadron.

Falcon 3: Squadron Leader Hamish Reichardt

Hamish joined the RNZAF in 2006, completed pilot training in 2007 and was posted to No. 3 Squadron, where he first flew the Bell-47 Sioux and UH-1H Iroquois. Following two years flying the Huey, Hamish was posted to the United Kingdom on exchange with the Royal Air Force flying the CH-47 Chinook. During this period, he flew in the USA, across Europe and the Middle East, including two operational tours in the Middle East. On return to NZ, Hamish was again posted to No. 3 Squadron to fly the NH90. During his time with 3 Squadron, he flew in Australia, the Pacific and across New Zealand including the Sub-Antarctic Islands. Hamish qualified as a Flying Instructor on the T-6C Texan II in 2020, and is currently one of the Flight Commanders at No. 14 Squadron. This is his second season with the RNZAF Black Falcons.

Falcon 4: Squadron Leader Michael Williams

Michael is from Dargaville and completed a Bachelor of Aviation degree before joining the RNZAF in 2003. He was posted to the P3 Orion flying as a co-pilot and captain around the Pacific, Antarctica, Australia, Asia, and the UK. Michael was posted to the Flying Instructor’s Course in 2009 before taking a year’s leave from the service to fly Tiger Moth and Yak 52 aircraft for a commercial operation in Australia. Upon return to the RNZAF he obtained an instructor exchange posting to the Royal Australian Air Force flying the PC-9/A until 2016. Michael is currently flying the T-6C Texan II as an A-Category Qualified Flying Instructor at the Central Flying School, and was previously the inaugural flight commander of the Air Force Heritage Flight. Michael has a passion for all things aviation, with a particular interest in warbirds. This has seen him qualified on various aircraft types including the SE5a from World War One, and the P40 Kittyhawk from World War Two.

Falcon 5: Squadron Leader Skids Harrison

Skids joined the RNZAF in Jan 2020 after serving with the Royal Air Force for 35 years.  Originally a Buccanner pilot, Skids became a Hawk T1 QFI and weapons instructor before converting the Jaguar in 1997.  On completion of his FLTCDR tour he undertook a NATO ground tour in Naples, Italy.  He returned to flying duties on the Jaguar before being posted to Oman in 2004.  Selected for loan service in the position of Fighter Standards, he flew both the Jaguar and Hawk 203 for five years.  He returned to the Hawk T1 as an instructor until 2016.  His final tour in the RAF was another NATO tour in Italy, this time In Ferrara.  Whilst there, he applied for lateral recruitment and was fortunate to get to New Zealand ahead of the COVID pandemic.  After completing the necessary conversion training, he joined 14 Sqn as an QFI.  He is currently a Central Flying School T-6C Texan II instructor.

Falcon 6: Flight Lieutenant Kieran, RAF

Kieran is a Royal Air Force pilot on exchange from the United Kingdom. He joined the RAF in 2017 and flew the Grob Tutor and Texan as a student in the UK. Kieran returned to the Grob Tutor to fly Air Cadets on an Air Experience Flight before being posted to New Zealand. Kieran arrived in New Zealand in Feb 23 to complete the Flying Instructor Course with CFS at Ohakea and is now a QFI on 14 Squadron.

On return to the UK, Kieran will re-commence his flying training on the BAE Hawk T2 before role disposal. Similar to SQNLDR Williams (BF4), Kieran also has a great interest in warbirds and vintage aircraft. Kieran has been building his Super Cub hours and hopes to fly the classics one day!

Falcon 7 - Team manager: Warrant Officer Glen Whitley

Glen joined the NZ Army in 1996 as a Field Engineer before remustering to the Military Police trade. In 2003 Glen service transferred to the RNZAF to commence training as a Helicopter Loadmaster at 3 Squadron. During his time in service he has conducted numerous domestic tasks in support of other New Zealand Government agencies, responded to Search and Rescue emergencies and deployed overseas to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Solomon Islands and East Timor in support of stabilisation operations. Glen qualified as an Aircrew Instructor on the Iroquois in 2010 and later posted on the A109 Light Utility Helicopter Introduction into Service team. Glen is a keen sportsman and has represented the NZDF in Cricket and Rugby as a referee. This is Glen’s first season with the RNZAF Black Falcons.

A Royal New Zealand Air Force T-6C Texan II aircraft flying with two people in the aircraft

A Royal New Zealand Air Force T-6C Texan II aircraft flying

The RNZAF Black Falcons fly the Beechcraft T-6C Texan II, a two-pilot aircraft powered by a Pratt & Whitney PT6A-68 turboprop engine capable of producing speeds up to 316 knots (585kmh) at altitudes up to 31,000 feet. It is equipped with Martin-Baker ejection seats and a modern integrated avionics suite with a Head Up Display and Flight Management System.

It is a purpose-built military training aircraft, equipped with a glass cockpit, a full suite of communications-navigation equipment and a pressurised cockpit and can withstand ‘G’ forces from +7.0 to -3.5, making it ideal for close-formation aerobatics.

The T-6C is used to train RNZAF pilots on their Wings course, and is operated by No. 14 Squadron based at Ohakea. It is also operated by Central Flying School at Ohakea to train new RNZAF flying instructors. It is supported by two flight simulators and avionics desktop trainers.

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