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Iwakuni 2024

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Iwakuni (Japan)

Iwakuni Friendship Day 2024

5 May 2024

Report and photos by Reinier Schreurs, some serials from photos found on the internet

Iwakuni Friendship Day 2024

High speed pass of VMFA-242 F-35B 169695/DT-12, generating some nice condensation vortices.

On May 5 MCAS Iwakuni opened its gates to celebrate, together with JMSDF Fleet Air Wing 31, the 45th Friendship Day. Around 115.000 people entered the base for the static displays and airshow. Highlights of the airshow were the CVW-5 flyover, the F-35B display, JASDF Blue Impulse, the MAGTF demo, the F-18 solo display from VFA-106 and a display by a JASDF F-2A.

MCH-101 8657 has stickers for the 50th anniversary of 111 Kokutai. According to the show announcer the CH-53E was from HMH 361 and the AH-1Z and UH-1Y were from HMLA 369. The crew from VFA 106 borrowed F/A-18F 166974/NF113 from VFA 102. For VFA 115 it was the last participation in Iwakuni Friendship Day as the squadron will pack up it’s things at the end of the year and move back to the States for conversion to the F-35.

Serials and units between brackets were not read off from photos but came from photo-captions found on the internet.

08-1212 C-2 403 Hikotai  
13-8513 F-2A 8 Hikotai  
52-8863 F-15J 305 Hikotai  
73466/VATH AH-1S 5 Taisensha Herikoputatai  
74503/IBH AH-64DJP 1 Sento Herikoputatai  
6836 TC-90 202 Kyoiku Kokutai  
Artikel Rafale 113 LEAB 22Feb22 Paco Rivas 1150 The show at Iwakuni usually attracts aircraft from all three Japanese services. 8 Hikotai brought F-2A 13-8513. For the slow mover part during TLP 1/22, Spanish C295M T.21-09/35-09 was used. (1 March 2022, Otger van der Kooij)111 Kokutai is celebrating its 50th anniversary and MCH-101 8657 had special stickers applied for this occasion.
8657 MCH-101 111 Kokutai  
8804 TH-135 211 Kyoiku Kokutai  
9171 EP-3 81 Kokutai  
6366 T-5 201 Kyoiku Kokutai  
9907 US-2 71 Kokutai  
91-26403/ZZ HH-60G (33rd RQS)  
168209 UC-12W Iwakuni  
167927/QD-927 KC-130J (VMGR-152)  
168989/NF-600 E-2D VAW-125  
164873/WK-00 F/A-18C VMFA(AW)-224 Black "Tiger" striping
Artikel Rafale 113 LEAB 22Feb22 Paco Rivas 1150 As can be seen, the serial of VMFA(AW)-224's F/A-18C WK-02 could not be checked. For the slow mover part during TLP 1/22, Spanish C295M T.21-09/35-09 was used. (1 March 2022, Otger van der Kooij)Two F/A-18s and two F-35Bs were positioned in a circle, making it hard to make a decent photograph. This is F-35B 169694/VK-14 of VMFA-121.
(164887)/WK-02 F/A-18C VMFA(AW)-224  
166797/NF-101 F/A-18F VFA-102  
166865/NF-306 F/A-18E VFA-115  
166901/NF-400 F/A-18E VFA-195  

Iwakuni Friendship Day 2024

CAG colours are the favourite of many Japanese photographers, probably making EA-18G 168255/NL-510 of VAQ-138 the star of the static.

168255/NL-510 EA-18G (VAQ-138) CAG c/s
168465/NF-212 F/A-18E VFA-27  
169130/NF-507 EA-18G VAQ-141  
169694/VK-14 F-35B VMFA-121  
169918/DT-16 F-35B VMFA-242  
169098/SM-50 AH-1Z HMLA-USA  
168784/SM-34 UH-1Y HMLA-USA  
161532/14 CH-53E HMH-USA  
167022/TA-02 MH-60R HSM-51  
167023/NF-711 MH-60R HSM-77  
168288/ET-44 MV-22B VMM-262  
Hangar 1
8651 MCH-101 111 Kokutai  
8654 MCH-101 111 Kokutai  
8660 MCH-101 111 Kokutai  
9090 US-1A wfu, ex 71 Kokutai no engines
Hangar 2
8191 CH-101 Shirase Hikohan  
8658 MCH-101 111 Kokutai  
9205 U-36A 81 Kokutai  
Hangar 4
8655 MCH-101 111 Kokutai  
9206 U-36A 81 Kokutai  

Iwakuni Friendship Day 2024MAGTF demo

KC-130J 169227/QD-227 is breaking right at the end of the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) demo, accompanied by WK-01 and DT-08.

Flightlines and flying:
162170/35 C-2A VRC-40 DET.5 departed
169227/QD-227 KC-130J (VMGR-152) MAGTF demo
164874/WK-01 F/A-18D VMFA(AW)-224 CAG c/s, MAGTF demo
166864/NF-305 F/A-18E VFA-115 CVW-5 flyover
166908/NF-405 F/A-18E VFA-195 CVW-5 flyover
166923/NF-104 F/A-18F VFA-102 CVW-5 flyover
Artikel Rafale 113 LEAB 22Feb22 Paco Rivas 1150VFA-106 had the honour of performing the F/A-18 solo demo, however they had to borrow VFA-102's 166974/NF-113. For the slow mover part during TLP 1/22, Spanish C295M T.21-09/35-09 was used. (1 March 2022, Otger van der Kooij)Demonstrating its STOVL abilities, F-35B 169695/DT-12 is hovering over its landing pad.
166974/NF-113 F/A-18F VFA-102 demo
168466/NF-214 F/A-18E VFA-27 CVW-5 flyover/buddy-buddy refueling
168899/NF-505 EA-18G VAQ-141 CVW-5 flyover/buddy-buddy refueling
169680/DT-08 F-35B VMFA-242 MAGTF demo
169695/DT-12 F-35B VMFA-242 demo
Artikel Rafale 113 LEAB 22Feb22 Paco Rivas 1150 The AH-1Z Viper attack helicopter provides rotary wing close air support, anti-armor, anti-air, armed escort, armed/visual reconnaissance and fire support coordination capabilities under day/night and adverse weather conditions for the USMC. For the slow mover part during TLP 1/22, Spanish C295M T.21-09/35-09 was used. (1 March 2022, Otger van der Kooij) The UH-1Y Venom multi-role utility helicopter is equipped with a wide range of weapons and mission support configurations to also perform close air support missions, along with combat assault support, search and rescue/causality evacuation, armed escort/reconnaissance, command and control, and special operation support.
169262/SM-49 AH-1Z (HMLA-USA)/(HMLA-369) MAGTF demo
168404/SM-32 UH-1Y HMLA-USA/(HMLA-369) MAGTF demo
161540/16 CH-53E HMH-USA/(HMH-361) MAGTF demo
168279/ET-04 MV-22B VMM-262 MAGTF demo
168074/QD-074 KC-130J (VMGR-152)  
NF-100 F/A-18 VFA-102  
NF-103 F/A-18 VFA-102  
NF-105 F/A-18 VFA-102  
NF-107 F/A-18 VFA-102  
NF-202 F/A-18 VFA-27  
168(365)/NF-203 F/A-18E VFA-27  
NF-205 F/A-18 VFA-27  
NF-214 F/A-18 VFA-27  
NF-215 F/A-18 VFA-27  
(166859)/NF-300 F/A-18E VFA-115  
166841/NF-302 F/A-18E VFA-115  
NF-303 F/A-18 VFA-115  
NF-310 F/A-18 VFA-115  
NF-502 EA-18G VAQ-141  
Flying only:
03-8509 F-2A 8 Hikotai  
Artikel Rafale 113 LEAB 22Feb22 Paco Rivas 1150 13 Hikotai's UH-1J 41908/XIII demonstrated rapid rope descents or fast-roping. No harnass or other safety gear is used. For the slow mover part during TLP 1/22, Spanish C295M T.21-09/35-09 was used. (1 March 2022, Otger van der Kooij)MV-22B 168279/ET-04 is unloading a bunch of Marines after the Venom and Viper cleared out any possible enemy ground threats.
41908/XIII UH-1J 13 Hikotai  
Blue Impulse:
06-5790/1 T-4    
06-5787/2 T-4    
36-5697/3 T-4    
16-5663/4 T-4    
36-5693/5 T-4    
16-5666/6 T-4    
26-5690/non T-4    
154638/WA-01 A-4 H&MS-12 mks  

Iwakuni Friendship Day 2024

Just a nice shot of KC-130J 169227/QD-227 of Iwakuni based VMGR-152, climbing out at the start of the MAGTF demo.

Credits: Reinier Schreurs

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