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New Russian Air Force Stunt Team to Have 12 Yak-130 Jets

Russia’s third aerobatics team will comprise 12 Yak-130 combat trainer jets, the Irkut aircraft maker said Tuesday. According to Irkut president Oleg Demchenko, the company in December signed a contract with the Defense Ministry on the delivery of 12 Yak-130 aircraft to form a new aerobatics team.

“We will supply five planes in 2014, and the remaining seven – in 2015,” Demchenko said at the Singapore Air Show where the Yak-130 is taking part in the demonstration flights program. He confirmed that the group is being formed at the Borisoglebsk training center in central Russia.

“Our testing pilot, Oleg Kononenko, has been training [the Yak-130] instructors at this center for six months,” Demchenko said.

The Yak-130 Mitten jet trainer/light attack aircraft is a subsonic two-seat aircraft developed by the Yakovlev design bureau. The first Yak-130s entered service with the Russian Air Force in 2009.

Russia currently has two aerobatic teams – Russkiye Vityazi (Russian Knights) with a fleet of four Sukhoi Su-27P and two Sukhoi Su-27UB Flanker fighter aircraft, and Strizhi (Swifts) who fly six MiG-29 Fulcrum fourth-generation fighter jets.

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