F/Lt Mike Thompson & Lightning XP753 - 25 years ago

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Meant to post this yesterday, but got side tracked by wife, kids etc etc. 25 years ago on the 26 Aug 1983, Mike Thompson was killed in his Lightning F3 XP753 whilst displaying unofficially off Scarborough. Scary thought that, as I can remember his display at St Mawgan in '83 and the news off his death a couple of weeks later like it was only yesterday. My brother even got his autograph at St Mawgan. RIP Mike.
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25 years.....:eek: My avatar is Mike Thompson in XP753 at RIAT Greenham Common a few months before, when he won the best solo award...... The last display of his I saw was a few weeks before the fateful Scarborough incident, when he displayed at the BAe Hatfield families day. No crowd line that day, and I was sitting on the grass about 30ft from the runway when he lit the burners and held it on the brakes for a brief moment and did a rotation take-off IIRC....sadly, I never took my camera that day, as I'd no indication that there was going to be anything more exciting than the company 146 demonstrator flying.....:mad: That was the best Lightning solo I'd seen since the days of Pete Chapman.
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I was chatting to my Dad this w/e about Lightnings and we ended up discussing F/Lt Mike Thompson and his stunning Lightning displays. Dad says he remembers watching XP753 land after his display at RAF St Mawgan in Aug 83 and the song 'Magic Fly' by Space was playing which sparked my memory... does anyone remember if the whole of his aeros display was conducted with this song playing as background music? A long shot I know, but if you don't ask... Here is a link to the song if it helps to bump your memory: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_ukfGAd8T4 I would love to see video footage of his display again - somebody must have footage somewhere - if only iPhone & Android devices were around at that time! If you have any pics of this aircraft, then please post away! :)

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I wonder if that was Mike I saw at Bentwaters, back in the 70's ? Brakes off and straight up to 30,000ft (if my memory serves me correctly). With the commentator asking people to time him. Those were the days when an airshow was an airshow.
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I wonder if that was Mike I saw at Bentwaters, back in the 70's ? Brakes off and straight up to 30,000ft (if my memory serves me correctly). With the commentator asking people to time him. Those were the days when an airshow was an airshow.
I'm not sure Alan... as far as I know, Mike Thompson was only the display pilot in 1983 but I could be wrong there! Lightning display pilots in the 70s included Russ Pengelly & Pete Chapman, but I was too young to have seen their displays (or at least remember them!)
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I'm not sure Alan... as far as I know, Mike Thompson was only the display pilot in 1983 but I could be wrong there! Lightning display pilots in the 70s included Russ Pengelly & Pete Chapman, but I was too young to have seen their displays (or at least remember them!)
I saw Pete Chapman's display at Biggin Hill in 1974 -still the best Lightning aero's display I've seen. Mike Thompson's at BAE families day at Hatfield in July '83 was a close second.
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John Aldington was another good Lightning display pilot. He was also a bloody good Hunter display pilot.
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Reading this thread brought back memorys of the Last Speke (Liverpool) Airshow in 1984. Cannot recall the Aircraft serial or pilot but remember vividly the Lightning F3 Display, Spirited to say the least, and on a scorching hot, cloudless day. Blue Skys and R.I.P to Flt/Ltnt Mike Thompson and all Lightning pilots lost in service. 50.000 feet and still climbing.