Virtute Siderum Tenus

The high standard of aerobatics performed by the Frecce Tricolori today is the expression of a glorious tradition which dates back to the Thirties and the days of men and their flying machines. This tradition, which has been proudly maintained over the years, has been identified with the 313th Aerobatic Training Squadron since the day it was formed on 1st July 1961, under the command of Major Mario Squarcina. Throughout its history the achievements of individual members and the astounding accomplishments of the squadron as a whole, have carried the Italian Tricolour flag into the skies all over the world.

The National Aerobatic Team (PAN), are best-known for their spectacular flying skill, but they are above all the embodiment of professionalism, team spirit and dedication: the foundations on which the Italian Air Force was built.

Not many people know that the National Aerobatic Team in addition to representing Italy and the Armed Forces in national and international air shows, is also a fully operational unit of the Italian Air Force. Exactly like all the other flight units, its navigation crew are always appropriately trained to plan, and if necessary, carry out flight operations.

This dual role makes being part of the 313th Squadron even more extraordinary. Flying is paramount and each member is an essential component of the team as a whole: the emotions, values and duties they share, render it a unique and thrilling experience. The Frecce Tricolori are a true symbol of national identity, their flight formation is a harmonious group: all the components move and interact with the absolute precision of a well-oiled machine. Exhaustive training is required to ensure that the team know every single manoeuvre in minute detail: nothing is improvised or left to chance.

As you read this brochure, I hope that the images it contains will move you and above all kindle a profound sense of respect for those who, with passion and courage, have made all of us not just spectators, but a part of Italian excellence.

Once again this year, the National Aerobatic Team will do their best to live up to the expectations of their increasingly numerous and devoted supporters with unwavering determination and renewed enthusiasm. They will do their utmost to deserve the warm reception of the public, which for the pilots and experts in the Frecce Tricolori, is a source of immense satisfaction and legitimate pride, with the full awareness of being first and foremost an essential component of the Armed Forces at the service of the community.