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The Swiss team that will take part in a display in Spain for the first time ever. Krzystof Wilma
Major air show set to take to the skies above the Costa del Sol
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Major air show set to take to the skies above the Costa del Sol

The Torre del Mar International Air Festival features display teams and aircraft from around the world and usually attracts some 300,000 spectators to the seafront stage

Alba Tenza

Vélez-Málaga,

Monday, 4 September 2023, 14:16

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It won't be long now before the skies above the Costa del Sol will be filled with skilled pilots in their amazing flying machines. This coming weekend, from the 8th to the 10th of September, Torre del Mar will host the eighth year of its International Air Festival. It is a much-awaited event, not only for the local residents of Vélez-Málaga, but also for the more than 300,000 people that this major event attracts every year.

This year the air show will bring together more than 40 aircraft with some of the best aerobatic pilots at an international level. The event's growth is so great that this year the festival will mark a very important milestone. "It is the first time that Swiss air force jets will perform a display in Spain. Having this team as part of our festival is going to be an important marker in the show's history", said the technical director of the festival, Pablo González.

The show will see the return of world champion aerobatic pilot Ramón Alonso to the air festival.

The event first got off the ground in 2017 as part of an initiative supported by Vélez-Málaga town hall. Last year's festival far exceeded the organiser's expectations, with a record attendance. Last year's festival was described as "a dizzying display with teams from different countries, a lot of excitement, impossible aerobatics and a lot of adrenaline in a day that left no one indifferent," according to the organisers.

This year the expectations are the same as last. Organisers want this event, where the public can see jet fighters, aerobatic teams, historic aircraft and the most modern, latest technology, to be something they will never forget. "This festival will combine many different things, including the presence of the Eurofighter, which I consider to be the greatest exponent of European industrial aeronautical development at world level," said González.

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The main feature of this year's air festival is the presence of a Swiss display team, which is a "diplomatic act", as the technical director of the festival described it. However, another major feature is the return of the world champion aerobatic pilot, Ramón Alonso.

Meanwhile, for the first time, a sustainably-fuelled aircraft will take part. "This aircraft is a kind of hybrid with electric parts," explained González.

This international air festival brings together different groups, air forces and institutions. Some of the participants in this year's events are: Patrouille de Suisse (F-5), Patrulla Águila (C-101), Yakstars (YAK-52), Eurofighter (C-16), Ramon Alonso (Sukhoi Su-31), Jorge Macías (Laser Z-300), Guardia Civil (CN-235), Patrulla Plus Ultra, Aeropublicidad (Socata Rallye, Super Decathlon (Real Aeroclub de Málaga), Patrulla Aspa (EC-120 'Colibrí'), Autogiro (Francis Giménez), Cuerpo Nacional de Policía (EC135) and Guardia Civil (EC-135).

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