19 Jan 2013

Wings over Wairarapa pulls 'biggest crowd ever'

8:45 pm on 19 January 2013

Organisers of the Wings Over Wairarapa airshow says this year's show may have attracted the biggest crowd ever.

Event manager Liz Pollock says at least 15,000 people have come to Masterton for the weekend-long annual show at Hood Aerodrome, but a final figure for the first day's attendance is awaited.

The show featured everything from replica World War I fighters to modern military helicopters, plus a virtual-reality jetpack simulator.

However the crowd favourite was a mock air raid, complete with dogfighting explosions and a tank and infantry battle on the ground.

The show also includes the last-ever flight in New Zealand of a Mosquito fighter-bomber.

A small group of veterans who flew Mosquitos in World War II were given the opportunity on Saturday to get up close to the plane and some were able to sit in the navigator's seat for a flight.

A combination of technical problems and bad weather prevented the Air Force's Red Checkers aerobatic team from performing on Saturday.