Canada’s air demonstration teams will likely stand down for the coming season thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. In a tweet addressing RCAF personnel, Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Jonathan Vance said the core focus of the military is now readiness in case the Forces are called upon to help the country through the crisis or anything else that comes up. “As for our demonstration teams, such as the Snowbirds, the CF-18 Demo Team and the SkyHawks, the show season may well be cancelled,” Vance said. Vance has already put an end to all training so the teams would need to complete the training before performing. The CF-18 has not been given its usual custom paint job.
The decision may be made for the Air Force in that air shows and community events that feature the demo teams are being cancelled across North America. Dozens of air shows in Ontario have been banned thanks to that province’s COVID-19 response. The committee organizing the Lethbridge Air Show in August have pulled the pin and other shows are nervously watching the news to gauge when life might get back to more normal. Sun ’n Fun cancelled this week and EAA AirVenture will decide by the middle of May whether to proceed with their show at the end of July.