VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The thrust and high speed maneuvers of the Navy’s Super Hornet jet will thunder over air show sites across the United States during the 2020 season.
The Navy’s Rhino Demonstration Team will charge into 2020 to perform at 11 show locations. Based at Naval Air Station Oceana, the demo team will display the dedication of its service members and inspire future naval aviators.
Lead Rhino Demo pilot Lt. Shane Brady is one of four who will demonstrate the handling and maneuvers of the Navy’s F/A-18F Super Hornet, nicknamed the Rhino. This year will mark Brady’s second season with the team.
“This year I am the overall lead with the team,” Lt. Brady said in an exclusive conversation on Tuesday with AvGeekery.com. “In terms of the talent we have on the team this year, and our show sites, we are doing double the shows we did last year.”
Lt. Brady and the entire Rhino Demo Team are currently practicing for their first show in mid-April. He acknowleged the team’s excitement in taking off for their first public demo.
“Once you go airborne, it get’s your heart racing which is awesome,” Snuffy began. “It’s a pretty busy time and when you’re off the brakes you’re essentially in air show mode, and you try to put a good show on for the crowd.”
Lt. Brady, who flies with the call sign “Snuffy”, pilots the two-seat F/A-18F with an assistant known as the weapon system’s officer. It is the WSO’s job to provide aircraft updates and announce the next maneuver to the pilot during the demonstration.
“The Wiz-O (WSO) allows me to focus solely on flying the aircraft,” The Wiz-O is like a second set of eyeballs, calling out airspeeds, and the timing of when to bring the afterburner back on and when to start the maneuver turns.”
Each 15-minute flight by the VFA-106 Rhino Demo Team will be the only way to witness the aircraft at an air show on the eastern half of the United States. Its twin-engines will glow bright orange as the afterburners kick in and the aircraft accelerates.
“This year, you are going to see a lot more out of our team,” “We changed our name, and we are trying to get that message of naval aviation out there. I think this year you should expect some good things coming from the team.”
F/A-18 Rhino Demo Team’s Updated 2020 Schedule:
April 18 …………….. (Cancelled) Thunder Over Louisville
May 23-24 …………. Hyundai Air and Sea Show (Miami Beach, FL)
June 5-7 …………….. Wildwood Air Show (North Wildwood, NJ)
June 13-14 …………. Ocean City Air Show (Ocean City, MD)
July 4 ………………… Thunder Over North Beach (Racine, WI)
July 23-26 ………….. EAA AirVenture Oshkosh (Oshkosh, WI)
August 15-16 ……… Chicago Air and Water Show (Chicago, IL)
August 29-30 ……… New York Air Show (New Windsor, NY)
September 19-20 … NAS Oceana Air Show (Virginia Beach, VA)
October 10-11 …….. Wings Over Houston Air Show (Houston, TX)
November 14-15 …. JBSA Air Show (San Antonio, TX)
(Charles A. Atkeison reports on aerospace and technology. Follow his updates via social media @Military_Flight.)