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The ultimate high performer

Flight Lieutenant Jamie Norris - Typhoon Display Pilot 2013
Typhoon Display Pilot Flt Lt Jamie Norris has spent the last year wowing the crowds.

In his ‘day job’, Jamie Norris has to be at the top of his game to play his part in the defence of our country. But, at weekends the RAF pilot instructor takes on the high-spinning job of showing off his wares with a roller-coaster routine in the skies above air shows across the globe.


RAF Leuchars Airshow

This weekend, he will take to the skies over RAF Leuchars for the base’s annual show. Hand-picked from volunteers to be the RAF's Typhoon display pilot in front of crowds of hundreds of thousands of people ranging from spotters to heads of state.


The display on paper

He pulls off a gravity-defying route to work based on a ‘ribbon plan’ he has dreamt up to showcase the jet’s best assets.

Flt Lt Jamie Norris's Typhoon display diagram 2013

Jamie said: “You start with a blank piece of paper and sit down with former display pilots and come up with some key points you want to get across in that year’s display. For mine, I want it to highlight the best two things about Typhoon, which are the thrust and care-free handling.

I wanted to show those two assets off because very few aircraft have the thrust to weight ratio Typhoon has and very few aircraft have full carefree handling capabilities, both of which we have. Hopefully what the public see is the Typhoon up close and personal, there are not many aircraft which can do that."


About Jamie Norris

The 32-year-old Geordie, who has been with the RAF since 2002, previously flew Hawk trainers and the famous Harrier before making the switch to Typhoon. His stint at the controls started with a two-week visit to Malaysia – which is looking at Typhoon as a potential for its air force – and has taken it through the skies over Britain at 30 shows this year.


Putting Typhoon in the spotlight

For Jamie, it is all about showing what Typhoon is all about. He said: “For the aircraft in its war role, the thrust has obvious benefits of being able to get the aircraft airborne in a very short distance with a lot of weight on the aircraft and stop in a short distance.

The display will highlight the phenomenal high and low speed handling characteristics of Typhoon, there are not many aircraft that can match the manoeuvrability of Typhoon across the whole speed envelope.”