T-50B Black Eagles drop by on flight home from S’pore Airshow

National 2 minutes, 19 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

THE Black Eagles aerobatics team from the Republic of Korea Air Force (ROKAF) yesterday landed at the Royal Brunei Air Force (RBAF) base for an overnight stopover on their return trip home from the Singapore Airshow 2016.

Six out of the nine T-50B Golden Eagle supersonic trainer jets that made up the team reached Brunei earlier this morning, with three of the remaining aircrafts delayed in Singapore due to technical issues.

The aerobatics team is in transit in Brunei after attending the Singapore Airshow 2016. Upon reaching the air base, the Black Eagles team was welcomed by Col (U) Mohd Sharif Dato Paduka Hj Ibrahim on behalf of the RBAF.

In his welcoming speech, Col (U) Mohd Sharif congratulated the team on a successful performance and display at the biennial airshow held at the Changi Exhibition Centre. He also said that the team would always be welcomed back to the Sultanate with the RBAF happy to provide the technical or logistical support and hospitality should they require it. Speaking during an interview, Col (U) Mohd Sharif said that the cordial relationship between the two countries and the ease to obtain clearance to land were among the factors that likely led to ROKAF deciding to stopover in the RBAF air base.

“Often, selecting a base to stop on a long route is normal but from Brunei’s perspective, the decision of the ROKAF to select this base to stopover probably happened due to the fact that our base provided better clearances, making it easier for them to come in,” he said.

“The level of support that the (Korean) embassy provided to the team also contributed and of course with the good relationship that we enjoy, perhaps that is why they chose here,” he said.

Explaining the role of the RBAF when hosting military contingents from abroad, Col (U) Mohd Sharif said that they coordinated with multiple organisations and agencies to make the stopover possible while providing technical support for the aerobatics team and its supporting crew.

“We provide as much support as we can from the Air Movement Centre here in Rimba which means amongst other things coordinating with their air force, with the customs here and providing the necessary clearances for them to come and land at the base,” he said. “We also provide the hospitality for the team to rest and recuperate and allow our centre here to be used for them to hold briefings,” he said.

A ROKAF ground crew had arrived in a C-130 Hercules military transport aircraft ahead of the Black Eagles team to prepare for their arrival at the air base in Rimba two days ago.

The team and the supporting ground crew will rest and recuperate overnight in the country before flying off again tomorrow.

The Brunei Times