In Aviation Photography, Battle of Britain, Silver Spitfire

August 5th marked the start of an amazing adventure for an iconic aircraft that we all have a place for in our hearts.

 

Matt Jones and his team are taking the Silver Spitfire on the ‘Longest Flight’, across 27000 miles visiting more than 30 countries. The expedition, being described as the pilots Everest, will ‘reunite the spitfire with many countries that owe their freedom to this iconic aircraft’

 

silver spitfire the longest flight

 

The Mk.IX Silver Spitfire is going around the world and we are happy to share some images of the start, it’s onward journey and answer some FAQs.

What’s unique about the silver spitfire?

The Mk.IX has had its guns removed and is being used in its bare metal state.

How has the aircraft been prepared for its adventure?

The aircraft has been restored and its test flight on July 11th saw the 90% original aircraft take to skies for the first time since the 1950s

Where was the aircraft originally built?

In Castle Bromwich in 1943

How did the adventure begin?

After taking off from Goodwood she was met in the skies of Lincolnshire by today’s modern day Spitfire, the Eurofighter Typhoon flown by this years display pilot, Flt Lt Jim Peterson of 29 Squadron. Together they  conducted a fly past near RAF Coningsby, home of the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.
silver spitfire with eurofighter typhoon raf coningsby
typhoon takes off to meet silver spitfire over coningsby
Prior to the flight Flt Lt Jim Peterson engaged in a brief with Matt and Smithy via telephone! A time to discuss routes and timings!
flt lt jim peterson typhoon display pilot briefing with matt jones

How many pilots are involved? 

Matt Jones is  being  accompanied and supported by his business partner and experienced pilot, Steve Brooks as well as  former Red Arrow and Officer commanding BBMF pilot, Ian Smith MBE. Smithy has years of experience flying both the Spitfire and Hurricane and has taken a sabbatical from his current role with the Typhoon Training Facility at RAF Coningsby. Read more about the team here
ian smith 'Smithy' will fly with the silver spitfire on it's longest flight

What were the considerations in planning the route?

The aircraft has limited fuel capacity and this is the primary factor in route planning. Therefore the Atlantic is avoided completely and the team will take a northern route instead. View the route map here
ian smith filling up the silver spitfire on its longest flight around the world

What will be the hardest part of the route?

Many factors will contribute to the ups and downs of the trip however it’s likely to be the unknowns that are the biggest challenges. There is potential for some very inhospitable countries and environments both politically and geographically! Follow their Pilot Diaries for more information as they travel.
Fun fact – did you know the Typhoon and Spitfire have the same wingspan! 

Celebrities and sponsors – who’s who!

The adventure is being supported by IWC Schaffhausen and the Boultbee Flight Academy and as such has attracted involvement from brand ambassadors including Taron Egerton, Rosamund Pike and David Coulthard.

 

Matt and Steve also received a letter of support from Prince Harry!

prince harry silver spitfire

Source: The Telegraph

Introducing the Petwood Bear…

This very special bear is part of the expedition and he’ll be sharing his journey as he leaves his home of the Petwood Hotel behind…

Tales of a bear…

From the Petwood to Goodwood, he’s a rare bear indeed!

More bags for his travels? We think there’s no need…

Miles becoming higher as he flies his Spitfire, except when the weather’s a bit iffy, he goes drinking with Smithy….!

petwoodbear silver spitfire longest flight
We wish all of the team every success in their endeavour and look forward to adding to the images below!

 

Love the Spitfire? Love ASALI. We are delighted to bring back the sell out Spitfire weekender and other Spitfire items to our growing range of luxury leather products.

Loved by Phillip Schofield and Carol Vorderman our BBMF range is worth a look! Many items can be personalised.  Shop the BBMF range here

 

Other items in our aviation ranges include the Tornado, Typhoon Chinook and Red Arrows.

 

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