GEICO Skytypers to perform at Patriotic Festival

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The GEICO Skytypers will participate in the 2013 Virginia Beach Patriotic Festival taking place May 31-June 2.

The team performs a low-altitude, precision-formation flying demonstration. The pilots fly six World War II-vintage aircraft, filling the sky and coming from all directions to provide spectators a unique viewing experience while showcasing the tactics and maneuvers utilized during training during World War II.

In addition, people from all over Virginia Beach will be able to view the GEICO Skytypers giant billboards in the sky. During skytyping missions the pilots fly 250 feet apart in a wide “line-abreast” formation. The team “types” dot-matrix-style messages that are approximately 1,000 feet tall and can be viewed from up to 15 miles in any direction and span up to eight miles in length. Each skytyped letter is generated in approximately four seconds, which is 17 times faster than the more traditional skywriting method.

The GEICO Skytypers fly six of the 11 remaining North American SNJ-2s for their airshow performances and skytyping missions. Each World War II-era plane has been fully restored and equipped with a computer that coordinates the smoke puffs released from each of the aircraft to form letters that are as tall as the Empire State Building.

“The contrast between the advanced technology utilized to produce these messages paired with a 1940s vintage aircraft is truly unique,” said Steve Kapur, GEICO Skytypers marketing officer and reserve pilot. “We consider it a privilege to fly these warbirds on behalf of GEICO at air shows all across the U.S.”.

A majority of the GEICO Skytypers pilots earned their wings in the military and most currently fly for commercial airlines.

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