The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds soar over Daytona Beach at Embry-Riddle's 2013 Wings & Waves.
Aerobatics, Skydivers, GEICO Offshore Racing Boat, Historical Aircraft, EcoCar and More Set for Embry-Riddle’s Wings & Waves Air Show Over the Atlantic Ocean Oct. 11-12
As the awe-inspiring aerobatics of America’s Ambassadors in Blue (a.k.a. the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds) and a dozen other acts take to the skies, future engineers, business leaders and, of course, pilots of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University will be wowing the more than 100,000 visitors on the ground at this year’s Embry-Riddle Wings & Waves Air Show in Daytona Beach.
Held over the Atlantic Ocean on Oct. 11-12, 2014, on the shore in front of the Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort, the event is free and open to the public.
This year’s event will include Embry-Riddle Community Zone at the Bandshell featuring hands-on activities for children with presentations by Kiddie Hawk and Aviation 101, student research projects including the EcoCar, university & event souvenirs, a photo zone and more.
A special tribute to America’s World War II veterans will take place the day before the air show, as they will be honored with a VIP experience including a front row seat to the show’s Friday practice over the ocean.
Numerous Embry-Riddle alumni are scheduled to participate, including three Embry-Riddle 2011 Worldwide graduates as lead pilots of the Thunderbirds, and Daytona Beach grads Quick Silver P-51 Mustang pilot Scott “Scooter” Yoak and GEICO Skytyper lead solo pilot Steve Salmirs. For Salmirs, who’s also currently a student in the Embry-Riddle Worldwide online master’s program, performing as part of Wings & Waves is special for more than one reason.
“Through its academic programs with an aviation influence, Embry-Riddle has helped form a basis in my life for achievements and direction,” said Salmirs. “Math, science, logic and communication are the skill sets necessary to design and fly air shows; however, it was the personalities and achievements of my professors that gave me my passion, which, above all, is the one tool that can overcome many obstacles.”
Performances will start daily at 11:30 a.m. Here are more details on each performer:
- U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds – Now in its 61st year of wowing audiences with aerial demonstrations, the 130-person squadron known as the “Ambassadors in Blue” represents nearly 700,000 active-duty, guard and civilian Airmen serving at home and abroad – including several team members who are Embry-Riddle graduates (Worldwide, ’11). Graduates Maj. Joshua Boudreaux (Thunderbird No. 2, Left Wing), Maj. Curtis Dougherty (Thunderbird No. 4, Slot) and Maj. Jason Curtis (Thunderbird No. 6, Opposing Solo) join other Embry-Riddle alumni including a Maintenance Support Flight Chief, Assistant Dedicated Crew Chief, Aerospace Ground Equipment Technician and Maintenance Officer. The demonstration is a mix of six aircraft performing formation flying and solo routines. www.afthunderbirds.com
- GEICO Skytypers – A flight squadron of six vintage World War II airplanes performing a precision-flight demonstration, the GEICO Skytypers are the only civilian squadron typing their giant dot-matrix style messages at air shows across the U.S. Their 18-minute demonstration highlights the unique features of the aircraft in addition to maneuvers used during WWII. Embry-Riddle Daytona Beach Campus alumnus Steve Salmirs is the lead solo. www.geicoskytypers.com
- Jack Link’s Screamin’ Sasquatch Jet Waco – Sponsored byJack Link’s and John Klatt Airshows, this aircraft is one-of-a-kind – a biplane with a jet engine that performs maneuvers no other aircraft can, including extreme vertical climbs, flat spins, snap rolls, torque rolls and even a hover. The pilot, Jeff Boerboon, is a two-time Advanced National Champion, past member of the U.S. Advanced Aerobatic Team, past member and captain of the U.S. Unlimited Aerobatic Team and U.S. Unlimited Aerobatic Champion. He joined John Klatt Airshows in 2012, flying both formation and solo performances. Jack Link’s: www.jacklinks.com/the-wild-side/screamin-sasquatch.aspx John Klatt Airshows: www.johnklattairshows.com
- Matt Chapman – An airline pilot who began flying aerobatics in 1984, Chapman quickly worked his way up to the highest level of competition aerobatics – the Unlimited category. At the 1998 World Aerobatic Championships, Chapman was the highest-ranking American pilot, finishing third in the world with a bronze medal, and leading the men’s team to a silver medal. He performs around the country in more than a dozen air shows annually representing Embry-Riddle. www.mattchapman.com
- Rob Holland – Flying the MX2 aerobatic aircraft by MX Aircraft Ultimate Airshows, Holland earned his title as current U.S. National Unlimited Aerobatic Champion and World Gold Medal winner in freestyle aerobatics by pushing the envelope of advanced aerobatic aircraft with a mixture of high and low altitude maneuvers. www.ultimateairshows.com
- Patty Wagstaff – A six-time member of the U.S. Aerobatic Team, Wagstaff has won gold, silver and bronze medals in Olympic-level international aerobatic competitions. She is the first woman to win the title of U.S. National Aerobatic Champion and one of the few people to win it three times. www.pattywagstaff.com
- Miss G Offshore Racing Boat – Sponsored by GEICO Insurance and owned by the country’s premier and fastest-performing powerboat racing team, AMF (America Moving Forward) Offshore racing, has won seven World Championship titles since the team’s inception in 2005. With the duo of Driver Marc Granet and Throttleman Scott Begovich, Miss GEICO holds numerous world speed runs and records. www.missgeicoracing.com
- Firebirds Xtreme – The internationally renowned aerobatics team of Jack Knutson in his Extra 300/s and Rob Holland in his MXS-RH delivers a high-energy, nonstop performance combining the precision of formation aerobatics with radical gyroscopic tumbles and dramatic head-on maneuvers. Their act also includes choreographed music and cockpit narration. Facebook: www.facebook.com/FirebirdsXtreme Rob Holland Ultimate Airshows: www.ultimateairshows.com
- 4CE Formation Aerobatics – The4CE is a formation aerobatic team with Matt Chapman in lead, Jack Knutson on left wing and Rob Holland on right wing. These aerobatic stars have combined their talents to form one of the newest and most exciting formation teams in aviation. Facebook: www.facebook.com/The4CETeam
- Lucas Oil Skydivers – Thisprecision skydiving team is led by jumper Nick Halseth, who also works as a freefall videographer and Cirrus parachute packer with three saves. The other skydivers include Luke Evens, who is a skydive instructor and videographer; instructor and tandem instructor Ryan Albrecht; medical device engineer and jump instructor Andy Junghans; and mechanical engineer-inventor-author Jim Skakoon. Halseth, Junghans and Skakoon are gold medal winners. www.lucasoilairshows.com
- Scooter Yoak, Quick Silver P-51 Mustang – Quick Silver P-51 Mustang, piloted by Scott “Scooter” Yoak, is a special commemoration of our nation’s armed forces. Every aspect of the aircraft represents those individuals who have served and those who made the ultimate sacrifice. This aircraft was built from more than 200 Mustang parts and projects – the remanufactured parts were handmade with the great attention to detail necessary to restore the Mustang to a condition better than factory-new in 1945. http://quicksilvermustang.com
- Jim Tobul, F4U-4 Corsair – This 1945 aircraft, dubbed the “Korean War Hero,” is piloted by Jim Tobul in air shows across the country. Restored by Jim and Joe Tobul over the course of 10 years, the plane still bears the marks of its history – three combat flak repair patches on the starboard wing and rear fuselage. www.koreanwarhero.com
- Gene McNeely T-6 Aerobatics – Gene McNeely is a world-renowned air show performer with the award-winning Aeroshell Aerobatic Team, executing his high-energy solo routines in a World War II-era T-6 Texan trainer. In addition to performing at air shows, Gene flies a T-6 in the Reno Air Races and has finished in the top five since 1986. www.naat.net/Newsite2012/Team/Gene/Gene.html
- Paul Schulten, Eagle Aerobatics – Paul Schulten’s experimental category 2001 Christen Eagle was built by Pete Gnaedinger of Glide Aero in 2001. Schulten has flown a wide variety of aircraft, including gliders, most general aviation planes, business jets and the 737 and DC-9. He has flown for Southwest Airlines for 21 years. http://eagleairshow.com
Aviator, author and broadcaster Sonny Everett will be the Master of Ceremonies. Hired for his first air show announcing gig in 1963 at age 17, Everett has been a guest on numerous TV and radio shows; has been featured in movies as an actor and stuntman; and serves as an expert commentator on aviation safety matters.
In addition to Embry-Riddle’s title sponsorship, other sponsors include Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort, GEICO, City of Daytona Beach, Bright House, Volusia County, Sheltair, Daytona Beach International Airport, Lucas Oil and Jack Link’s Beef Jerky.
For sponsorship involvement and volunteer opportunities, contact Rick Grissom at airshowFL@aol.com. For visitor information and official media registration, go to the event’s official website at wingsandwaves.com.
Director, University Communications
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Office: (386) 226-7538
Cell: (386) 283-0753
Communications & Media Relations Manager, Daytona Beach Campus
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Office: (386) 226-6198
Cell: (386) 846-1835