Red Arrows
Red Arrows

Change At The Top After Red Arrows Pilot Injured Playing Football

 Red Arrows

Red Arrows over Tangara Airbase, Greece, as part of Exercise Spring Hawk 2018 (Picture: MOD).

The Red Arrows have changed the pilot flying as Red 3 ahead of the 2019 display season. 

Flight Lieutenant David Simmonds, who was flying in that position, is no longer able to continue after being injured playing football.

Flight Lieutenant David Simmonds Red Arrows
Flight Lieutenant David Simmonds injured his knee playing football (Picture: MOD)

Squadron Leader Martin Pert, Team Leader of the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, said: "The knee injury, which involves broken bones, was sustained as he turned to chase a football.

"He’s recovering and remains very much part of the Red Arrows family but Simmo will miss too much of the season work-up to maintain his Red 3 place for this year."

In his place, Flight Lieutenant Mike Bowden, who left the Red Arrows at the end of 2018 after four years as a display pilot, will now return for this season.

This will allow the Red Arrows to fly as our iconic nine-ship formation.

The Red Arrows have another week of flying before departing for their annual overseas training exercise after Easter.

This summer the Red Arrows are carrying out their largest ever tour of North America.

The nine-week visit, which will cover the US and Canada, is their first major tour in more than 25 years.

Flight Lieutenant Mike Bowden Red Arrows
Flight Lieutenant Mike Bowden Red will now take the position of Red 3 (Picture: MOD)

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