NATO Tiger-meet NAS Landivisiau june 2017

report by: Danny Bonny and Mike Danks


NATO Tiger Meet  has been on my calendar for the past four years and is not one to be missed. Over those years the spotters’ days have allowed an up close and personal view of the participating aircraft with opportunities to speak to crew manning the stalls selling anything and everything tiger squadron related. The 53rd edition year’s NATO TIGER MEET  was held at BAN Landivisiau by 11 Flottille. Located in the vicinity of the town of Landivisiau, some 30 kilometers from Brest, the naval airbase of Landivisiau ensures, since February 1, 1965, the support of the whole embarked fighter fleet of the Force Maritime de l’Aéronautique Navale. 1.600 personnal, of which 220 civilians, assorted to four service groups, ensure the operational, technical and logistical support of the three Flottilles : 11F, 12F and 17F but also of its squadron 57S.

The Flottille 11F is the oldest fighter training school of the Aéronautique Navale.  The first fighter squadron of the Aviation d’Escadre, created on March, 1, 1919. In these days, the squadron was equipped with Hanriot HD.2. At the start of the Sceond World War in September 1939, the AC1, ancestor of the 11F, was equipped with obsolete Dewoitine 373/376. From August 1951 till June 1952 she sees action in Indochina aboard the aircraft carrier Arromanches flying American F6F5 Hellcat. The Flottille was disbanded a first time on January 17, 1955 and reactivated on April 4, 1955. Disbanded again on April 18, 1962, she was restored to active service on Dassault Etendard IV.M on April 1, 1963. The 11F left BAN Hyères-Le Palyvestre in May 1967, to move onto its actual base at Landivisau.

Equipped with the Dassault Super Etendard from September 1978, the Flottille 11F was tasked with naval and land assault day and night missions. At the end of 2010 the Flottille starts her conversion onto the Dassault Rafale M and on September 19, 2011. Equipped with the Dassault Super Etendard from September 1978, the Flottille 11F was tasked with naval and land assault day and night missions. The aircraft were armed with anti-ship missiles AM-39 Exocet and fitted to carry the nuclear bomb AN-52. Originally issued from the correspondence between RAF 74 squadron and the US Air Force Tigers at Woodbridge, the 79th TFS of the 20TFW. It was then decided to establish common operational exchange. Escadron de Chasse 01.012 Cambresis was one of the 3 units to participate at the very first Tiger Meet in 1961. In 1962 the Tiger Meet was a much bigger affair and eight squadron were represented. Then the exercice grew up until reaching it’s actual size!

Tiger Meet  is one of the longest running NATO exercises (although not formal) with participating aircraft from European nations, both old and new. The exercise runs for two weeks and this year had spotters’ days on the two separate weeks. The exercise is designed to train the air forces in Combined Air Operations (COMAO) but also to give them to train for specific needs. These include Close Air Support (CAS) working with Forward Air Controllers (FAC), slow mover protection/Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) and Dissimilar Air Combat Training (DACT).

There are two waves per day with the shadow wave launching in the morning. This is where the individual training needs are flown. The afternoon wave is the much larger COMAO with all aircraft working together to complete a set of objectives. These aircraft mainly all launch and recover from the host base, apart from the AWACS and tanker assets which normally fly from their home bases. During those two weeks, more than 800 exercises and 1.200 hours were flown and to achieve these results some 800 pilots and technicians were needed to accomplish the very complex tactical missions.

Below are 2017s participating squadrons and extra non Tiger Squadron assets taken from the Tiger Association website:

French Navy  Flotille 11F  BAN Landivisiau  Rafale M

Swiss Air Force   Staffel 11 Meiringen AB  F/A-18C/D Hornet

Austrian Air Force   1 JTS   Vogler AB  Saab 105Öe

Italian Air Force  XII Gruppo    Gioia del Colle  EF2000 Typhoon

Italian Air Force  21° Gruppo     Grazzanise    AB-212ICO

French Air Force  ECE 01/30 (FAF)   BA118 Mont-de-Marsan  Rafale C/B

French Air Force  EC 3/30 (FAF)       BA118 Mont-de-Marsan  Rafale C/B

Belgian Air Force  31 Squadron  Kleine Brogel AB  F-16AM/BM

Czech Air Force  211 TL Cáslav AB            JAS-39C/D Gripen

Dutch Air Force   313 Squadron   Volkel AB  F-16AM/BM

Royal Air Force  230 Squadron   RAF Benson Puma HC Mk2

Royal Navy  814 Squadron  NAS Culdrose  Merlin HM. MK2

French Army  EHRA 3   BA d’Étain-Rouvres  SA 342 M Gazelle

NATO  1st Squadron   Geilenkirchen AB   E-3A Sentry (1x)  (Flying from MOB)

External Participants

French Navy   Flottille 4F  BAN Lann-Bihoué  E-2CHawkeye

French Army   5 RHC   BA Pau  EC665 Tigre HAP

Royal Navy    849 Squadron   NAS Culdrose  Sea King ASaC Mk7


Polish Air Force  6 ELT   Poznan-Krzesiny AB  (No plane)

Greece Air Force  335 Mira    Araxos AB  (No plane)


Royal Norwegian Air Force   338 Skv    MAS Ørland  F-16AM/BM

German Air Force  TaktLwG 51  Schleswig-Jagel AB Tornado ECR & IDS

German Air Force  TaktLwG 74   Neuburg AB  EF2000 Typhoon

Czech Air Force  221 LtBVr    Námest AB Mil Mi-24 Hind

With next year’s Tiger Meet being held at Poznan – Krzesiny Air Base  by 6 ELT, I suspect it will be a popular one to attend. Globalairpower would like to thank Lieutenant Elyne Lamarre for arranging the media-day and All the staff off NAS Landivisiau for their hospitality and help during our visits.