Air Force Red Checkers return to Masterton

RNZAF Red Checkers display team OH 09-0022-15

Media Release

19 January 2012

As part of the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s 75th Anniversary celebrations, the Red Checkers will be taking part in an aerobatic display at The Vintage Aviator Ltd Airshow to be held at Masterton’s Hood Aerodrome on Saturday 21 January.

The aerodrome has its own special connection with the Air Force. During 1942 No. 14 Fighter Squadron was based at Hood Aerodrome, where the pilots trained for the war in the Pacific and the Squadron’s Kittyhawk fighters provided air defence for Wellington, had it been needed.

The Red Checkers are not strangers to Masterton — the aerobatic team has regularly appeared at the biennial Wings over Wairarapa Airshows.

This year the Air Force is celebrating 75 years of service to New Zealand. An Act of Parliament in 1937 made the Air Force independent of the Army and, by the end of WWII, the new Service was a large and effective air arm. "By the actions of its men and women throughout the World War, and in many conflicts and operations since, the RNZAF has created a rich history, of which all New Zealanders can be proud," says Air Vice-Marshal Peter Stockwell, Chief of Air Force.

To celebrate the anniversary the Red Checkers will be performing at events and activities across the North and South Islands from January to April. Aerial displays can be seen at the Tauranga City Airshow in January, GEON Art Deco Weekend in Napier in February and the Air Force’s own Airshow at Ohakea on March 31, concluding with performances at the Warbirds over Wanaka Airshow over Easter.


For more information about anniversary celebrations visit





This page was last reviewed on 19 January 2012.