It’s that time again, FighterSweep Fans! Welcome back to our weekly homage to all things afterburner. It still is our favorite day of the week, as we get to set our gaze upon glorious Mach diamonds and soak up the world-shaking crescendo as only the Sound of Freedom can provide! This week, our thanks go out to the “Grim Reapers” of VFA-101.

This week’s offering is brought to you by Scott Dworkin, and features the badassery of the most powerful single-engine fighter aircraft ever designed, the Lockheed-Martin F-35 Lighting II. This particular jet is a C-Model, the carrier variant under development for the U.S. Navy. This particular aircraft is assigned to VFA-101–the unit designated as the Navy’s Fleet Replacement Squadron for the F-35.

As we mentioned a while back, VFA-101 made a trip out to NAS Fallon, Nevada, to spend time at the U.S. Navy’s Strike and Air Warfare Center. It was the first time the F-35 integrated with the instructor cadre at Top Gun, and proved to be a very valuable training evolution for both sides.

Without getting into too much detail, suffice it to say the F-35C performed beautifully when flying with the Hornets and Super Hornets at Fallon. The sensors worked beautifully, as did the jet’s other design features. While the Grim Reapers have a ways to go until they hit their stride, the unit is well on its way. So enjoy this little bit of Lightning Love as you make your way into what will hopefully be a spectacular weekend!

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