The Shuttleworth Collection got their season underway with the usual backbone of the home fleet supported by a handful of visiting items.
Burbling across the airfield in the morning to park up along the crowd line was a welcome sight in the form of Supermarine Seafire FR XVII SX336, making a return to the airshow scene having been under overhaul with Seafire specialists Kennet Aviation since 2018. The Naval fighter took to the air again in Autumn 2021 and was recently transferred into the ownership of the Navy Wings Heritage Flight based at RNAS Yeovilton. SX336 was put through its paces with a punchy solo display by Lt Cdr Chris Gotke after appearing alongside the Collection’s Sea Hurricane.
The Seafire was not the only elliptical wing to be seen at the show, with the Collection’s own Spitfire Mk V AR501 with wingtips attached, having flown in clipped wing configuration since returning to flight in 2018.
Large types always make an impression at Old Warden and that is certainly true of Plane Sailing’s PBY Catalina, a regular attendee, that always gives visitors an excellent display. The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight’s Avro Lancaster B.I PA474 also made an appearance with a series of spirited flypasts.
Several American classics from the 1930s appeared in their own segment of the show. A new resident at Old Warden, the gorgeous Ryan ST-A Special N7779 owned by Arnaldo Leon made its first flying appearance at a show, resplendent in the attractive colours it wore during service with the Netherlands East Indies Air Force, paired with Kennet Aviation’s T-6. one of Nigel Pickin’s Spartan 7W Executives from Little Gransden.
Recently imported from the US, Kennet Aviation’s very attractive US Navy schemed Boeing N2S-5 Stearman made its airshow debut, albeit with a short, sedate and very distant display, along with one of Nigel Pickin’s Spartan 7W Executives from Little Gransden.
Although a somewhat grey day, calm wind conditions allowed some of the lighter types to round off the show with the Bristol Boxkite and Avro Triplane, as well as a superb flight by Richard Crockett in the English Electric Wren.
For more information on upcoming Shuttleworth airshows and to purchase tickets, follow this link: www.shuttleworth.org/events/