Taipei, Aug. 10 (CNA) The Air Force's Thunder Tigers aerobatics team celebrated its 60th anniversary Saturday by putting on an aerial display for thousands of people at Tainan Air Force Base.
The base was opened to the public Saturday for the celebration of the anniversary and of Air Force Day, which falls officially on Aug. 14.
The team's seven AT-3 jet trainers conducted a series of spectacular aerial stunts after soaring through the air in formation and creating multicolored smoke ribbons in the sky, thrilling the nearly 10,000 military fans in attendance.
In addition to the air show, a variety of aircraft, helicopters and vehicles, including the F-16, IDF and Mirage 2000 jet fighters, were also on display at the base.
The Thunder Tigers, which were formed in Tainan in 1953 and performed in Taiwan for the first time in 1954, made their overseas debut in 1957 at the Philippines International Air Show in Manila.
The team gained fame in 1959 when it performed a stunning and dangerous aerial stunt with 12 F-86 Sabres at the International Aviation Association's air show and has performed in several countries around the world since.
Saturday was the first time the team had performed at Tainan Air Force Base since moving from the base to the R.O.C. Air Force Academy in Gangshan in greater Kaohsiung 20 years ago.
(By Chang Jung-hsiung, Chen Pei-huang and Y.L. Kao)