Blue Diamonds (aerobatic team)

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For the Royal Air Force's Blue Diamond Aerobatic team (1960-1977) see No. 92 Squadron RAF
The Blue Diamonds
Philippine Air Force Aerobatic Team
Blue Diamonds Fighter Jet.jpg
The Blue Diamonds "Sabre" emblem on an F-86F Sabre circa 1962
Active 1953 – 2005
Country Philippines Philippines
Branch Philippine Air Force
Role Aerobatic flight display team
Size varies per season
Base
Insignia
Identification
symbol
PAF Blue Diamonds.svg
Aircraft flown
Fighter

The Blue Diamonds was the national aerobatic team of the Philippine Air Force (PAF), based at Basa Air Base, in Floridablanca, Pampanga.

History[edit]

Formed in 1953 by First Lieutenant Jose Gonzalez the Blue Diamonds first used P-51D Mustangs growing in popularity and strength, along with the PAF. The move into the jet age started in 1959, when the F-86F Sabre was acquired by the air force during its modernization. Lieutenant Lino C. Abadia commanded the team at the time of transition to the F-86, performing in every annual Aviation Week. [clarification needed] Smoke was introduced in 1958 and on 1 August 1959, the team performed at a Republic of China Air Force air-show with the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds .

In 1963, in response to the United Nations request for the Philippines to contribute to a peacekeeping mission in the Congo by deploying a squadron of fighter pilots and support personnel, The Philippine Air Force created the "LIMBAS" 9th Tactical Fighter Squadron. Pilots from the 6th TFS and 7th TFS were reassigned to form the core of this elite Fighter squadron and as a result, the Blue Diamonds were not able to perform that year.

The Blue Diamonds changed mounts in 1968, transitioning to the F-5 Freedom Fighter.

Aircraft[edit]

Blue Diamonds F-5
Type Examples In use
P-51D Mustang 5 aircraft 1953–1959
F-86D 8 aircraft 1959–1968
F-5 Freedom Fighter 12 aircraft 1968-late 2005

References[edit]

External links[edit]