Formation Aerobatics Clarification

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In the early 1990s, it was common practice for a four-ship formation aerobatics team to fly at whatever level of SAC card held by the team lead.  For a long time, this seemed to make sense.  Ships 2-4 are flying solely in reference to the lead’s paint.  It was thought that if the lead is capable, then the rest of the formation will not veer off his side.  In essence, the old practice stated that if pilots 2-4 had 800 foot SAC cards but the lead had a surface level card, the entire team could fly at the surface.

The rule in present day is a bit more sensible.  If the pilots in a formation aerobatic team do not have the same level SAC cards, the entire team must fly at the highest level held by any member of the team.

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