Koksijde 1990's

Airshow 1990 : 7 - 8 July 1990

The highlight of the static display was undoubtedly the huge USAF B-1B bomber coming from Ellsworth AFB. The Portuguese Air Force had send 2 G-91 Gina's over to Koksijde for the last time before they were retired in 1993, so very welcome visitors to the show. New on the storage compound were the cocooned Mirage V's awaiting to be upgraded and sold to Chile. Though there was one very colourful Mirage V in the static display: BR15, to celebrate the 70th Anniversary of 42 Squadron (Mephisto). For the flying display, the most well-known European display teams came to Koksijde: Patrulla Aguila, Red Arrows, Patrouille de France and Frecce Tricolori. There were 2 remarkable solo displays as well: an RAF Alconbury A-10 and a RAF Coningsby Phantom FGR.2!

Airshow 1991 : 6 - 7 July 1991

For the second year in a row there was an Ellsworth AFB based B-1B in the static display!! Some more USAF aircraft could be found in the static display: a KC-135, a West Virginia Air National Guard C-130 and 2 RAF Woodbridge based A-10's. Prior to the airshow, the international SAR-meet was being organised by the 40th Sqn. Most of the units stayed during the weekend for the airshow so a nice line-up of SAR helicopters could be made. Germany sent a former East Germany Mi-8T based in Brandenburg-Briest, now used for SAR. Other special SAR helicopters were a Spanish AS.332B Super Puma and a RAF Wessex HC.2.

Airshow 1992 : 4 - 5 July 1992

The airshow in 1992 will always be remembered as the US Navy airshow in Koksijde. The USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67) was cruising in the mediterranean sea and one of each aircraft type came to the airshow. There was a VF-74 F-14B Tomcat, a VFA-81 F/A-18C Hornet, a VA-35 A-6E intruder, a VAQ-132 EA-6B Prowler and a VS-30 S-3B Viking! The USAFE came with 2 Upper Heyford based F-111E's, one for static display, and the other one performed an awesome demonstration!! The portugese Air Force presented their A-7 Corsair II on the ground as well as in the air. The RAF came to Koksijde with their mighty Buccaneer for the very last time before being retired in 1993.

Airshow 1993 : 3 - 4 July 1993

Because of the fall of the iron curtain, more and more Soviet countries came to western European airshows. In 1993 we saw the invasion of the Czech Air Force on Koksijde airshow. Not less than 9 Czech Air Force planes were on the airshow and one Czech AN-12 came as support. One Mig 29 Fulcrum, one SU-25 Frogfoot, one L-39 and a pair of Mi-24’s participated in the flying display. Germany participated with a very special HFB.320ECM Hansa Jet and a Mi-8T in a nice blue livery. The Royal Air Force brought the mighty Victor for the last time to Koksijde. This was the last type of the V-force still in use in the Royal Air Force and the last Victor was retired in October 1993. And the Belgian Air Force said goodbye to the Mirage V with a 4-ship demonstration.

Airshow 1994 : 2 - 3 July 1994

The Royal Netherlands Air Force showed off with their new SAR helicopter, the AB-412SP that replaced the Alouette III. Now that most of the stored F-104’s were gone, there was room for some extra 104’s. The Italian Air Force brought 2 Cameri based F-104S-ASA for static display. Patrouille Suisse flew at Koksijde for the last time with their 6 Hawker Hunters before transferring to the F-5E Tiger. A team that came for the first time to Koksijde was the Swedish Team 60 flying with 6 Saab 105’s. The Swedish Air Force also brought 3 Saab Viggens to Koksijde as well as a Beech 200 and Saab 105 for static display. Another breathtaking solo display was the display of a Spangdahlem based F-15C.

Airshow 1995 : 1 - 2 July 1995

The highlights of the static display were undoubtedly two Turkish F-4E’s based at Eskisehir. A very rare solo display came from the French Navy with a F-8A Crusader. On Saturday there was a surprise display of a USAF F-117A Stealth fighter, based in Holloman. Unfortunately they did not land at Koksijde and they did a display at Volkel airshow that day as well.

Airshow 1996 : 6 - 7 July 1996

The Belgian Air Force Falcon 900B which was acquired in 1995 was presented to the Belgian people for the first time. On Friday a Polish AN26 together with 2 TS.11 Iskra’s arrived in Koksijde. One of the Iskra’s continued to Bruntingthorpe in the UK. The landing at Koksijde was the final touchdown of the aircraft as the airframe continued via the road to the Brussels Air Museum. This year the Slovak Air Force came for the first time to Koksijde. They came with 2 Mig 29’s and an AN26 support aircraft. One of the Mig 29’s displayed during the airshow. Other highlights were a French Navy Etendard IV doing a solo display as well as 2 Swedish Air Force Saab Drakens of which one was doing a solo demonstration. No airshows without stunt teams, and this year there was a very special team. Not less than the famous USAF Thunderbirds performed at the Koksijde airshow for the first time. They operated from the USAF base in Chiévres.

Airshow 1997 : 5 - 6 July 1997

Due to the bad runway surface no fighter jets could land at Koksijde anymore. So the famous European airshow had lost part of its glory… Fortunately there were still many other interesting things to see at the airshow. In the static display we had a Mildenhall based MC-130P and MH-53 both used for Special Operations. The Canadian Air Force sent a CP-140 Aurora for the static display. In the flying display there was a very special helicopter demonstration. One of the based Sea King’s airlifted a bus, while an Ostend based MI-26 lifted a truck! Furthermore the Italian Frecce Tricolori, the French Patrouille de France and the British Red Arrows performed as well.

Airshow 1998 : 4 - 5 July 1998

After runway repairs in 1997, fighter jets could land again at Koksijde for the annual airshow. To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the F-16 in the Belgian Air Force, solo display aircraft FA67 was painted in a stunning white scheme. The F-16 got the name “The White Falcon” but the scheme only lasted for a couple of months as later that year FA67 was being upgraded to MLU standard in SABCA thus losing its beautiful paint scheme. To participate in the Nato Tigermeet, FA71 was painted in a magnificent tiger scheme! It was being put in the static display next to two Italian F-104S-ASA starfighters. To see an aircraft overview, click here.

Navydays Zeebrugge 1999 : 17 - 18 July 1999

Every year the Belgian Naval base in Zeebrugge opens its doors to the big public. Traditionally some helicopters are in a static display and this year was no exception. There were 2 A.109’s in the static display as well as a Belgian Navy Alouette III and a Belgian Seaking. On several ships there were some helicopters on their helicopter deck. There was a Portuguese Navy Lynx, a Canadian CH-124 Seaking, and a US Navy SH-60B Seahawk. To see an aircraft overview, click here.