Sunday, September 5, 2010

Transport: Canadian International Air Show

A variety of rescue equipment, including a Navy Zodiac, a Coast Guard vessel, and in the background a CP-140 Aurora plane, was included in the Canadian International Air Show in Toronto, Ontario on 6-September-2010

TORONTO, ONTARIO - It would have been hard to top last year's Canadian International Air Show (CIAS), the annual event held in conjunction with the Canadian National Exhibition over Labour Day weekend. Having the Blue Angels and the Canadian Forces Snowbirds in the same show was simply phenomenal, with other stunt planes, historic aircraft, and military aircraft thrown in for good measure. Sure enough, the 2010 CIAS will not displace the 2009 edition from my memories, but it was a decent show.

The Corsair "Gray Ghost One" flew with the "Golden Centennaire" CT-114 Tutor in the tribute flight of the Canadian International Air Show on 5-September-2010

Saturday's edition of the CIAS was actually canceled because of high winds--which were actually of greater concern to the water rescue teams than the fliers. So, the Sunday show that I attended today was actually the first of the weekend. A big theme of this year's show was the centennial of the Canadian Navy--a CT-114 was dressed in a special livery, and the sea side of the Navy took explicit part in the show with the HMCS Fredricton firing off its guns and a zodiac boat from the Fredricton buzzing the shore repeatedly. The Fredricton's display gave a great example of the difference between the speed of light and the speed of sound, with the noise reaching the shore well after the smoke from the firing had dissipated in the high wind.

The HMCS Fredricton fired off its guns during the Canadian International Air Show on 5-September-2010

The show was relatively light on stunt pilots. Perennial participant Mike Wiskus put on his regular display in the Lucas Oil S-1-11b SS. Perhaps because of the novelty and speed of his performance, Rob Holland probably made the greatest impression in the Window World MX2.

Rob Holland flew practically on the surface of Lake Ontario during the Canadian International Air Show in Toronto, Ontario on 5-September-2010

While the weather was windy and cloudy, the crowd built until it was time for what many people came for--the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, celebrating their 40th anniversary this year. While their traces of a heart in the sky were rapidly blown away by the wind, their graceful maneuvers made heading down to the lake shore worthwhile just to see their performance.

Seven of the nine Snowbirds passed overhead during the finale of the Canadian International Air Show on 5-September-2010

Of course, the best part of the CIAS is that the free viewing area is only marginally worse than the paid viewing areas--approaching the shoreline just west of the Western Gap from the Jameson footbridge or from the Sunnyside area puts one right on the flight line. There will be one final performance at 12:30 on Labour Day, viewable from Marilyn Bell Park along Lake Ontario in Toronto.

No comments: