This spectacular event was to be the highlight of the Summer of 2012, even though the numerous Air Forces announced in the pre-publicity failed to arrive in any quantity. Had they arrived then I know not how they could have been fitted into the schedule. The highlight of the long flying display were the flypasts; not just a one pass opening but a sequence of groups spread through the day; each dedicated to a different aspect of the service. The bomber force, the trainers, the transports, the helicopters and the trainers all participated with a long session in the morning dedicated to vintage warbirds, many of which had travelled from the rest of Europe.
After a long break since 1995 when the 50th anniversary of VE-Day was celebrated, the Russian Air Force’s participation in the traditional Victory Day military parades in Moscow’s Red Square resumed in 2008. This year the Air Force was involved on a much larger scale than previously, putting up 69 assorted fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft.