Air Force Spartan comes to Bathurst Lifeline Soar, Ride and Shine

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) will join the Bathurst and wider Central West community for the Lifeline Soar, Ride and Shine festival at the Bathurst Regional Airport over the weekend of 7-8 April.

A C-130J Hercules will conduct a flypast of Bathurst Airport on both days of this event, while a C-27J Spartan will be on static display at the airport for the public to tour.

The flypast and aircraft involved with this event are subject to variables including operational availability and weather, and may be subject to change.

Both aircraft are from RAAF Base Richmond in Sydney’s northwest, and throughout the year will frequently utilise airspace and airfields in the wider Central West area to conduct critical training for pilots and loadmasters.

Wing Commander Matt Cooper, Commanding Officer of No. 37 Squadron, said Lifeline Soar Ride and Shine would be an opportunity for locals to see RAAF aircraft up close and speak to the crew.

“It’s a relatively short flight across the Great Dividing Range for us, and within the wider area there are airfields on which we practice a variety of missions,” Wing Commander Cooper said.

“A lot of this flying is done at low level and in proximity to some communities by day and night, which means it’s important for many within the local area to understand what we do.”

“We’re glad to support Lifeline Soar Ride and Shine and for this opportunity to engage with the public.”

The Australian Defence Force relies on the Spartan and Hercules to deploy personnel, cargo and other essential equipment. Both aircraft can airdrop cargo by parachute or be used to carry patients for aeromedical evacuation missions.

In the past 12 months, the Australian Defence Force has deployed these aircraft to provide election support as well as disaster relief in Papua New Guinea, and conduct exercises in Guam and New Caledonia.

“For many in the region, the arrival of a Spartan or a Hercules often means that help is on-hand, or that they’ll soon be delivered safely home,” Wing Commander Cooper said.

“The training we conduct in the Central West often has a direct application to the flying that we’ll conduct on real operations.”

You can find out more about this event here: https://www.soarrideshine.com.au/