The "Super Bowl of Air Shows" returns to Ventura County this weekend after a five year gap
It's a rare opportunity to see both the Blue Angels and the Thunderbirds aerobatics display teams in the same show.
An F-18 Super Hornet from the Blue Angels, roars above Point Mugu in Ventura County, as the Navy aerobatic team rehearse ahead of the return of the public airshow at the Naval base this weekend.
It is a rare opportunity to see both the Blue Angels and the Air Force’s Thunderbirds in one show.
"It doesn't happen very often, it's usually a special event like a Super Bowl," said Drew Verbis, from Naval Base Ventura County.
"You're going to get the Super Bowl of air shows," added Verbis.
The daredevil stunts and passes of the Blue Angels and Thunderbirds are set to attract around 125,000 people on Saturday and Sunday. But – Blue Angels Flight Commander and leader Alex Armatas, says when they are airborne, they are happy to be crowd-pleasers but are focused primarily on safety.
"Our number one priority is a safe flight demonstration so we will adjust for the weather to put on a good show, to put on a safe show," Armatas told KCLU.
"All of our maneuvers are designed to showcase a specific aspect of the team or aircraft," he explained.
The Thunderbirds provided some noisy interruptions to our conversation but the Thunderbirds Commander and leader Lieutenant Colonel Justin Elliott, reckons that any rivalry is more like a sibling rivalry.
"It's all in good fun and what that means is we are family.
"It's a high G show but the Thunderbirds know how significant the G force is on these F-16s," said Elliott. He said the pilots wear G-suits to keep them safe during G-force of up to 9Gs.
Elliott said the Thunderbirds will bring an "emotional experience in all the good ways" with some "sneak passes" to surprise the audience.
"It should make you proud to be an American," he said.
The show may be filled with thrills and a LOT of noise, but Captain Robert Kimnach said it’s also a chance for the local community to experience the Naval Base.
"We are the largest employer in the county with over 20,000 people - if you count our active duty, plus our federal workers plus our contractors.
"We provide over 5 billion dollars of economic impact to the county but most of the time our gates are secured and not everyone can get on the base," said Kimnach.
"This is a great opportunity to open up the base to the general public," he told KCLU.
Point Mugu Airshow is free and doors open at 8am both days, at Naval Base Ventura County, Point Mugu.