Lockheed F-104S Starfighter – 21 Gruppo, 53 Stormo Italian Air Force, Tiger Meet 1996
1 in stock
1 in stock
Witty Sky Guarduans 1/72 scale 72 016 003: Lockheed F-104S Starfighter of 21 Gruppo, 53 Stormo Italian Air Force, Tigermeet 1996. Complete with fixed lowered undercarriage. Display stand NOT included.
Length 9.25 inches Wingspan 3.75 inches
The NATO Tiger Meet originated in 1960 when the 79th American TFS, equipped with F-100 and based in Woodbridge (GB), and the 74th English SQN equipped with Lighting and based in Colishall, decided to meet at Woodbridge airport. for a mutual exchange of information on the growing potential threat coming from the Warsaw Pact countries, and also for a general improvement of friendship and mutual collaboration. The common subject of their emblems, the tiger, gave rise to the name. In July 1961 the invitation to participate was extended to all departments of the Atlantic Pact that had the tiger as their emblem.
In the year 1962, again on Woodbridge Air Base, the groups that participated in the second edition of the “Tiger Meet” were eight representing the USA, England, France, Germany, Belgium, and Canada. In 1968, in Germany, the “Tiger Meet” was organized by the Canadians of the 439th SQN based in Lahr; the first Italian participation dates back to that year; the 21st Group, having obtained the official authorization to boast again the emblem of the rampant tiger, was allowed to participate, as an observer, in that edition.
In Italy the “Tiger Meet” was organized for the first time in June 1973, on that occasion eleven departments participated. The twenty-first edition of the “Tiger Meet”, which was held in June 1980, was again organized by the 21st Gr., On that occasion 47 flying groups representing twelve nations participated, namely: Italy, Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Federal Germany, Greece, England, Norway, Portugal, Turkey, and of course the USA. There was a third “Tiger Meet” organized in Cameri by the 21st Group, the twenty-eighth of the series, which was held in July 1988 and with the participation of twenty-three Flying Groups. In 1998 the exercise took place on the Lechfeld Air Base, in Germany, and the 21st Group won the silver trophy for the first time., the “silver tiger”, for the maximum score obtained in the exercise.
Designed to meet a need for an aircraft that could successfully compete against the MiG-15 in Korea, the F-104 Starfighter was first flown on February 20, 1958. American pilots believed that the F-86 Sabre was too large and complex to outmaneuver the lighter MiG, and they wanted a smaller, simpler, high-performance aircraft to replace it. The resulting design was a light, aerodynamic airframe wrapped around a powerful J79 turbojet engine. The F-104C was used by the USAF from 1958 until 1967, but most of the 2,578 production Starfighters were built and flown by members of NATO, including the Italian Air Force, which didn’t retire it until 2004.
The Aeritalia F-104S Starfighter was a licensed production Italian version of the Lockheed F-104 Starfighter, which served in the Italian Air Force (AMI, Aeronautica Militare Italiana), and was the AMI’s mainstay from the late 1960s until the beginning of the 21st century. The F-104S also served in the Turkish Air Force until the mid-1990s. The F-104S was the final development of the Starfighter line.
Derived from Lockheed’s design studies on a “Super Starfighter”, the F-104S was one of the most capable of the F-104 series, and destined to be the last in service worldwide. The F-104S (upgraded to ASA/M standard) was retired from service in October 2004.