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GEICO Skytypers to headline 2016 with Blue Angels, Thunderbirds

The precision flying of the world famous GEICO Skytypers will soar to new heights as they announced on Sunday a busy 2016 air show schedule above the nation’s top air shows beginning with the long awaited season opener in Tampa.

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The GEICO Skytypers announced their 2016 air show schedule on January 17 as they prepare to take flight above the nation’s top air shows beginning in March.

Their twenty minute flight demonstration highlight these rare aircraft as the pilots tell the story of an age before the jet engine; and how a this prop plane made the difference during the second world war. A flight trainer in the early-1940’s, the SNJ was known among the army’s aviators as the pilot maker.
As the warbirds soar across the sky, they will also generate sky typed messages for the air show crowds. For many, the Skytypers have become an air show favorite as they bring both the aerial assault of a World War II dog fight to life, and create local messages during the show.
“The team also uses 21st-century technology to type giant messages 10,000 feet up in the sky,” said BBIG Marketing’s Brenda Little, spokesperson for the Skytypers, on Sunday. “These dot-matrix style messages are 1,000 feet tall, can be viewed from 15 miles away in any direction and are created 17 times faster than the more traditional sky writing method. Individual letters can be as tall as the Empire State Building.”
Six WWII-era SNJ-2 warbirds form this special flight demonstration team are now scheduled to soar across the skies of 14 air shows this year over much of the east coast. The Skytypers will co-headline several of those air shows with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels and the Air Force Thunderbirds.
Led by Larry Arken in Skytypers 1, the team’s aircraft 2 through 6 include Ken Johansen, Chris Orr, Bob Johansen (Ken’s father), Steve Salmirs and Tom Daly. Skytyper 7 pilot is Jim Record and is the team’s advance pilot who arrives a day early to meet with the air show management. Skytyper 8 is Steve Kapur, pilot 9 Mike Eberhardt, pilot 10 Dino Peros, pilot 11 Keven Sinibaldi and Rob Steo round out the flying team as pilot 12.
The Skytypers air show season will take-off on March 19 during the two-day Tampa Bay Airfest at MacDill AFB. The team will perform an hour before the Thunderbirds take to the afternoon skies on both days.
The Skytypers will then follow the smoke trail left by the Thunderbirds as the two teams join up again over Joint Base Langley near Hampton Roads, Virginia, on April 23 and 24. One week later, the team will perform as a lead in to the Blue Angels over Marine Corps. Air Station at Cherry Point, N.C.
Performances in Fort Lauderdale and Jones Beach, NY in May will lead in to the Great Tennessee Air Show near Nashville in June followed by a visit to Syracuse one week later — the latter two shows include the Blue Angels. The team will perform on two nonconsecutive days in July at the largest aviation show — Airventure Oshkosh in Wisconsin.
Miss GEICO will hit the warm waters off Atlantic City during a one day air show on Aug. 17. The Skytypers will push the envelope as they perform a low race above the super charged water craft.
The team will then perform at two air shows in September, two in October and close out their season with the Blue Angels over Jacksonville Beach at the Sea and Sky Spectacular the weekend of Nov. 5.
“Joining the GEICO Skytypers team at select events will be the Miss GEICO offshore racing team, whose high-powered speedboat has brought home eight world championships,” Little added as she reviewed the new schedule. “The Skytypers aircraft will even challenge Miss GEICO to a dynamic air and sea race.”

GEICO Skytypers to perform with Blue Angels, Thunderbirds in 2016