Klamath Falls, Ore. – European-built L-159 ‘Honey Badger’ jet fighters are now tangling with F-15’s from the 173rd Fighter Wing in Klamath Falls.
The Czechoslovakian L-159 fighter jets are playing the ‘bad guys’ against the F-15 Eagles.
“It’s definitely smaller than the F-15 that you see flying around on any given day.” Notes Captain Chris DuBois of the Oregon Air National Guard. “But it will still provide a good, realistic threat replication for us, and provide quality training for our students.”
The L-159’s are owned by Las Vegas based Draken International.
The jets are flown by highly experienced former U.S. military pilots.
“Most of them have flown F-15’s, F-16’s, most of the inventory currently in the U.S. military.” Adds DuBois. “So leaning on some of their experience and their depth of knowledge will help our students learn.”
While the F-15 is a bigger, faster, more powerful fighter, Captain DuBois points out that the Honey Badger is a small target. “Any time you’re going up meeting something smaller in the sky, it’s tougher to get used to – tougher to find, tougher to see.”
The Honey Badgers will be part of two test training programs at Kingsley through June and July.
The L-159’s come in one, and two seat versions.
They’re currently in use by the Czech Air Force, and the Iraqi Air Force.
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