Viper is thus an unofficial name for the airplane, but there is one USAF unit that uses it on the record. That would be the F-16 Viper Demonstration Team, a small outfit tasked with “maintaining community relations for the Air Force and recruiting future service members."
Like all aerobatic crews, the F-16 Viper Demonstration Team is getting ready for a busy year ahead, which in this case will see plane and humans keeping it up and running move to 21 events across the United States, starting in March and ending in November (full calendar here).
Even if the official start of the air show season is a few weeks away, pilots are already training hard, and so does the Demonstration Team commander, Maj. Garret Schmitz. It’s him you see in the main photo of this piece, flying upside down in his F-16 Viper, over the Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina during a practice run held at the beginning of February.
The official name of the maneuver being performed is four-point turn, but the Senior Airman who captured it on a Nikon camera managed to press the shutter button at the perfect moment to capture it inverted. Amazing for us, the usual day at the office for the Major.