omega tau at the USAF Thunderbirds


In June 2019 I had the great honor of flying in the backseat of an F-16D with the USAF air demonstration team, the Thunderbirds. Flying in an F-16 was a dream I’ve had since I was 12 years old. Thank you, Thunderbirds, for turning my Big Dream into reality.

If you have never seen the Thunderbirds in action, I suggest you check out Youtube for a few videos of their airshows. Here are some of the best I found: Aviation Nation, Las Vegas, 2012 (Full Show), Thunder over the Bay, 2019 (Full Show), Selfridge Open House, 2017 (In-Cockpit Video), Super Bowl Fly-Over, 2019 (In-Cockpit Video), Lead Solo 2014 (In-Cockpit Video), Thunderbirds B-Roll, 2017 (Various).

 

Podcast Episode

The 3.5 hour podcast episode (omega tau 318) is the main product from this experience. It covers the medical briefing about how to prevent motion sickness and how to deal with Gs, suiting up with flight suit, g-suit, harness, helmet and mask, the briefing with my pilot Maj. Jason Markzon, the flight itself with commentary, an interview about the Thunderbirds with Jason, as well as a reflection on what the flight meant to me, recorded jointly between Markus and Nora.

The episode is in the regular omega tau feed which you can get via the usual places where you can find podcasts. You can also play it from the episode page; note that there are chapter marks in the player so you can jump to the place that interests you most.


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Videos

This video contains the most interesting parts of the flight in pictures, GoPro video and HUD cam.

 

This video is the full, unedited HUD cam video.

 

 

Suit-up
Prep
In the Air
Formation
Landing
Post-Flight