The Blue Angels are arguably the world’s most recognisable flight demonstration squadron in the world. Since 1946, the flight squadron has showcased their abilities across the globe. On their 75th anniversary, IWC Schaffhausen celebrates the Blue Angels achievements on their historic milestone.
Since it became an official licensee in 2019, IWC has launched two special edition pilot’s watches, which celebrate the Blue Angels. The Blue Angels was first conceptualised by Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Chester W. Nimitz who envisioned creating a flight demonstration squadron in the U.S. Navy.
Since that idea first took root, the squadron has established themselves as the world’s foremost flight demonstration squadrons in the world. Today, the Blue Angels compromises 140 Sailors and Marines. Throughout their history, the Blue Angels have flown an immense variety of aircraft.
They started with the F6 Hellcat, the F8 Bearcat, and the F9 Panther. During the 1950s, they refined their demonstrations in the F9 Cougar and F-11 Tiger and introduced the first six-plane delta formation, a spectacular aerobatic manoeuvre that they still fly today.
By the end of the 1960s, the Blue Angels were flying the F-4 Phantom before transitioning to the A-4 Skyhawk. In 1986, the year of their 40th Anniversary, they transitioned to the F/A-18 Hornet. In 2021, the squadron transitioned to and now perform in the F/A-18 Super Hornet.
Every one of their jets showcases blue and gold, the official colours of the U.S. Navy. Each year the squadron demonstrates their impressive skills in front of approximately 11 million spectators across the globe.
Honouring The Blue Angels
As part of the 75th anniversary, the Blue Angels invited Glen Powell to spend a day at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, Florida. The American actor, who is the newest member of the IWC family was given the rare opportunity to fly in the back seat of the Blue Angels #4 jet. Check out the clip here.
On a demonstration ride, he experienced highspeed fly-bys and thrilling aerobatic manoeuvres. While on-site, Powell also visited the National Naval Aviation Museum, one of the world’s largest aviation museums. On display are more than 150 aircraft, including former Blue Angels A-4 Skyhawks.
Since IWC became an official licensee of the Department of the Navy in 2019, the Swiss luxury watch manufacturer has collaborated with the Navy to design two special edition chronographs. The Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition Blue Angels (Ref. IW389008) in black zirconium oxide ceramic marked the beginning of the licence agreement.
To celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the squadron, IWC has just released the Pilot’s Watch Chronograph Edition Blue Angel (Ref. IW389109) with a case made of stunning blue ceramic. Developed with members of the squad in signature blue and gold, the limited edition timepiece is engineered with a new calibre 69380 automatic movement shielded from magnetic fields by a soft-iron case. It’s fitted on a durable textile and rubber strap and detailed with commemorative engraving on the stainless steel case back. Get it here.
(Images: IWC Schaffhausen)