RIAT 2009 went ahead despite the wet conditions, on base parking for ‘Park and View’ and 5km of metal roads help relieve the pressure on the car park fields. A sell-out crowd in excess of 160,00 enjoyed a weekend of flying involving 269 aircraft from 33 air arms representing 22 counties. Saturdays weather stayed dry but a mixture of low clouds and blue skies gave the display pilots a challenge to make best use of the changing conditions through their display.
After the cancellation of the 2008 event due to water-logging of the site, particularly the car parks; this year's team had taken every precaution; doubling car park space off site and allowing some on airfield parking for the first time since 9-11. It was very successful though the allocation of ramp space, the recession and military commitments elsewhere reduced participation by some air forces.