Frisian Flag 2001, Leeuwarden, the Netherlands


Between 15 and 26 October 2001, the annual Frisian Flag exercise was held at Leeuwarden Air Base in the Northern part of the Netherlands. Frisian Flag is the successor to the DIAWACS and DIATIT exercises and has the intention of training combined operations by multinational partners.
2001's exercise saw the participation of French Mirage 2000N's, Norwegian F-16's, German F-4F's, but above all, Finnish F-18's Note that the Finnish Hornets have been designated F-18 instead of F/A-18 due to the type's exclusive air-to-air role. The pictures below were shot during a photocall at Leeuwarden Air Base on October 18, 2001.

All pictures (c) Hans Rolink

  Mirage 2000N-K2 311/4-BT
311/4BD is one of the Mirage 2000N aircraft from EC 2/4. In the French Air Force, the Mirage 2000N was introduced as a tactical nuclear strike aircraft carrying a single ASMP nuclear tipped cruise missile. During the 1990's, the type picked up an additional conventional role. Since then, the designation has been Mirage 2000N-K2.
F-16AM 662
F-16AM 662 from the Royal Norwegian Air Force 334 Skvadron. 662 belongs to a batch of modernised F-16A Block 15OCU aircraft that will continue to serve with the Royal Norwegian Air Force for some years to come. Note the AIM-120 AMRAAM Advanced Medium Range Air-to-air Missiles on the wingtips.
F-18C HN-425
F-18C HN-406 of HävLLv 21 from Tampere Air Base. The aircraft were flown by pilots from all three Finnish F-18 squadrons, however. The Finnish Air Force procured the Hornet to replace both the Swedish SAAB 35 Drakens as well as the Russian MiG.21bis. In all, 57 aircraft were ordered. Of these, nine visited Leeuwarden during Frisian Flag. Not a bad score.
F-4F ICE 38+30
The F-4F Phantom is still the primary fighter of Germany's Luftwaffe. This ICE modified (ICE = Increased Combat Efficiency) F-4F belongs to Jagdgeschwader 71 "Richthofen" and is based at Wittmund in the extreme North-East of Germany.

Dassault Falcon 20ECM 041
Dassault Falcon 20ECM 041 of 717 Skvadron is one of two fulfilling an ECM training role with the Royal Norwegian Air Force. A third example flies as a VIP transport. 717 Skv is based at Rygge.