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Why aren't The Red Arrows at the Sunderland Airshow this year?

The Red Arrows will be a big miss at this year's Sunderland Airshow Credit: PA

The Sunderland International Airshow without The Red Arrows? Unfortunately, it's true.

The RAF display team won't be attending the airshow, nor the Great North Run this year, due to a clash of schedules. Instead, they will be entertaining crowds across the Atlantic.

The Red Arrows North American Tour will kick off with a performance in Halifax, an Atlantic Ocean port in eastern Canada on Wednesday 7th August and come to an end in western South Dakota, USA, on Tuesday 8th October.

The Sunderland Airshow confirmed on their Twitter page that the fan-favourite is not included in the line-up this year.

It's 11 years since the Red Arrows visited North America. With more than 20 displays and 98 separate ground engagements scheduled, the 108 people on tour, including pilots, engineers and support staff will be very busy.

Highlights of the tour include performances in the skies of Seattle, San Francisco and Chicago, plus guest displays at the Toronto, New York and Los Angeles air shows.

A map of the Red Arrows' North American Tour 2019 Credit: RAF/Red Arrows

In 2018, the airshow crowds grew to hundreds of thousands to watch the Red Arrows take to the sky for the Sunderland Airshow's 30th anniversary, which included their first-ever flight over the Northern Spire bridge.

But don't worry - there's still plenty of exciting performances to see, with an incredible line up of confirmed air displays including a special Battle of Britain Memorial Flight will honour the 75th anniversary of D-Day.

Which aircraft are performing this year?

RAF Chinook Swiss Air Force PC-7 Team RAF Battle of Britain RAF Tycoon Falcons Parachute Display Team RAF Tutor Norweigan Air Force Historical Squadron T33 P-47 Thunderbolt, P-51 Mustang, Spitfire & Hispano Buchon Strikemaster The Blades The Bronco The Fireflies The Tigers Army Parachute Display Team Royal Navy Wildcat and HMS Albans SK35C Draken

The RAF Typhoon Display Team are returning to Sunderland Credit: RAF Typhoon

We have worked really hard to secure aircraft that have never been seen here in Sunderland before.

Even after thirty years we are always looking to grow the event from strength to strength and I’m really pleased that we can announce these brilliant new acts and welcome the crew to our great city.

By having a strong flying display line-up, some great music acts and a brilliant entertainment and activity programme on the ground, we hope that more visitors than ever will come and enjoy this free weekend for all the family.

– Sunderland City Council Chief Executive, Patrick Melia
  • Watch: Red Arrows fly across Northern Spire bridge 2018

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