The flying portion of the show began at 11:30 am with the singing of the national anthem and flag jumps by the Patriot Parachute Team. After the opening ceremonies, multiple aerobatic pilots took to the skies to perform. Highlighting them was Bill Stein in his Edge 540, Kent Pietsch in his Jelly Belly Interstate Cadet, Chuck Coleman in his Extra 300, Anthony Oshinuga in his Pitts S-1 biplane, and Jim Pietz in his F33C Bonanza. Another major aerobatic act was the Red Bull Air Force which consisted of Kirby Chambliss flying his Extra 540, Aaron Fitzgerald in his BO-105 helicopter, and the "Swoopers" jump team.
The show featured a stellar amount of classic jet aircraft ranging from the final days of WWII to the Korean War era. The jets featured were the F-86 Sabre and MiG-15 Fagot of Planes of Fame performing a dogfight simulation, the T-33 Shooting Star "Ace Maker II" piloted by Gregory "Wired" Colyer, and a rare DeHavilland Vampire British jet fighter piloted by Jeff Conley.
As usual, many warbirds were featured at this event. The warbird portion of the show offered plenty of photo passes from the aircraft and lots of pyro. The aircraft flying included the P-51 Mustang, F8F Bearcat, Supermarine Spitfire, and B-17 Flying Fortress "Sentimental Journey" of the Commemorative Air Force, the F4U Corsair and B-25 Mitchell of Planes of Fame, and the newly restored P-38 Lightning from the Collings Foundation.
Representing the U.S. Marine Corps in the show was the MV-22 Osprey. The MV-22 is a tilt-rotor aircraft that can perform both the capabilities of an aircraft and helicopter. In the demonstration, the crew showcased the many capabilities of the MV-22 including flat passes and hovering maneuvers.
Perhaps the rarest part of the show was flybys from 2 different versions of the Lockheed U-2 Spy Plane on Saturday. The first aircraft to fly was a U-2S known as the "Dragon Lady" which flew out of Beale AFB. The second was a NASA ER-2 High Altitude Research Aircraft. This was a major part of the Skunk Works 75th anniversary celebration because the U-2 is a major accomplishment from the Lockheed corporation.
Concluding the air show was the United States Air Force F-22 Raptor Demonstration Team based out of Langley AFB, Virginia. The F-22, piloted by Maj Paul "Loco" Lopez, took to the skies of Lancaster for the very first time ever and showcased the many advanced characteristics of the fifth-generation fighter including tight turns, tail slides, and high speed passes. After the solo demonstration, Maj. Lopez joined formation with a P-38 Lightning piloted by Mr. Steve Hinton for the Heritage Flight. This was a rare opportunity for the public to watch a formation of U.S. Air Force fighters of past and present. After the Heritage Flight, the P-38 flew a solo aerobatic routine to commemorate 75 years of Lockheed Skunk Works. On Saturday, after the flying was over, Maj. Lopez walked over to the center of the airshow to swear in new Air Force recruits with a very special Wall of Fire.
After flying activities concluded, spectators were able to continue visiting the different static displays and tents before gates closed at 5:00 pm. Special thanks to the organizers, volunteers, sponsors, performers, and spectators for making the 2018 Los Angeles County Air Show a success!