Close up of Red 6 after birdstrike at Rhyl airshow 28082022 CREDIT Steve Bridge, @stevieb1968.jpg_.jp
A spectator managed to capture a close up of Red 6 after the bird strike at the Rhyl airshow (Picture: Steve Bridge/ @stevieb1968).
Red Arrows

Red Arrows pilot praises teamwork after bird strike forced an emergency landing

Close up of Red 6 after birdstrike at Rhyl airshow 28082022 CREDIT Steve Bridge, @stevieb1968.jpg_.jp
A spectator managed to capture a close up of Red 6 after the bird strike at the Rhyl airshow (Picture: Steve Bridge/ @stevieb1968).

A Red Arrows pilot has praised the "true teamwork" that kept him and others safe following a bird strike that halted the team's display at the weekend.

The Royal Air Force display team were closing out the Rhyl Air Show in north Wales after a weekend of flypasts by Typhoon jets and the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.

The team's display on Sunday in Wales was cut short after the cockpit canopy of one of the jets, named Red 6, was smashed by a bird during the airshow.

The jet was then forced to break off from the rest of the team and return to Hawarden Airport following the mid-air incident.

Red 6 pilot, Squadron Leader Gregor Ogston has thanked everyone for the "kind messages and good wishes", praising the "well-rehearsed emergency procedures, togetherness and training resulted in a safe outcome".

He said on Twitter: "Thank you to everyone for the kind messages and good wishes.

"As ever, our well-rehearsed emergency procedures, togetherness and training resulted in a safe outcome - true teamwork. Looking forward to displaying for you all again very soon."

The Red 6 pilot added his "particular thanks" to Red 7 pilot James Turner who escorted him back to the airfield and to the emergency services at Hawarden airport for their "speedy response and assistance".

The Red Arrows spokesperson posted to Twitter that "this type of incident is not uncommon in aviation and is extremely well-trained for."

The spokesperson added: "In this instance, Red 6 and the whole team responded perfectly together, with no further risk to the pilot and aircraft. Happy to report the jet landed safely and the pilot is unhurt.

"Thank you for the many well wishes and messages!"

David Montenegro, Officer Commanding for the Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, took to Twitter at the weekend to confirm that Red 6 pilot Gregor Ogston was "a bit shaken but well".

He said: "Steve, the pilot... is a bit shaken but well, thank you.

"His immediate actions delivered calmly and correctly with the support of his colleagues ensured a safe outcome."

The rest of the squadron abandoned their performance before heading back down to Hawarden airport, once they were cleared for landing.