More than 1,500 military personnel, 60 fighter jets and 13 helicopters are practicing their flying skills this month at the 2019 NATO Tiger Meet at the French Air Base at Mont-de-Marsan. 

Around 900 sorties are being planned, prepared, conducted and debriefed at the 2019 NATO Tiger Meet. According to a NATO news release:

“International military flying units with a tiger in their logo are getting together at the base south of Bordeaux to conduct tactical flying exercises. The participants from fighter and helicopter units from NATO Allies Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Spain, the United Kingdom, Partner Austria and a NATO AWACS plane are flying large mixed aircraft formations also known as composite air operations (COMAOs). 

For ten days, two aircraft waves are flown. During the morning COMAO waves of some forty aircraft take off to simulate aerial manoeuvres against twenty others; this takes more than two hours and requires thorough preparation and debriefing sessions for the pilots and planners. In the afternoons the so-called shadow wave will provide training opportunities for junior pilots with limited scenarios and smaller training areas. All flights are conducted in separated airspace over the ocean, the Mont-de-Marsan area or the central parts of France.”

The different Tiger squadrons coordinate and fly together so they will find it easier to cooperate in real-world scenarios whenever and wherever required.

The NATO Tiger Meet is a tactical-level live-fly event that has existed since 1961.

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Steve Salt

Fantastic paint job on that Typhoon…..sorry EF2000.

James Harrington

that’s is a great paint job !


Is the RAF sending two men and a woman and one typhoon?

Harry Bulpit

No puma


Ok ?

Daniele Mandelli

What was the RAF Tiger Fighter Squadron? 84? 78?

Alan Reid

Hi Daniele, it was 74 Squadron. At the time of disbandment (around 1992), it was based at Wattisham. Uniquely for the RAF Phantom fleet, it flew J79 engined aircraft, procured directly from US stocks – rather than the usual British Spey variant. Along with 19, 56 and 92 squadrons – it was a fighter unit with a very distinguished pedigree (Mannock, Malan etc) which we lost to the front-line at the end of the Cold War. It would have been good to see Typhoon units take on some of these famous fighter number plates – but the current RAF policy… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

Ah! I knew it was up in that number range somewhere. Thank you Alan. I’m old enough to remember the 2 Phantom Squadrons on ex USN aircraft stood up then, expanding on 7 Tornado Squadrons and the remaining Lightning Squadrons at Binbrook. More than the current fast jet strength of the RAF just in 11 Group… Yes I had read in AFM over the years of the clamour for one of those number plates to be resurrected as Typhoon units. I think 56 and 92 exist now but as Ground OCU or OEU. Shame. I wonder if the policy will… Read more »

Alan Reid

Hi Daniele, 617 Squadron is one of the most junior squadrons in the service – but a special case is made for obvious reasons! LOL
Another special case is 120 squadron, the top scoring anti-submarine MPA unit during the Battle of the Atlantic, which will shortly reform on the Poseidon MRA1.

Daniele Mandelli

And I agree with both Alan.

Fame should be recognised.


The F-4J(UK) Phantoms of 74 Squadron converted over to FGR2 Phantoms in January 1991. There were many unique US systems onboard the F-4J(UK)/FG3 Phantoms, including the helmets, compared to larger fleet of Spey Phantoms. These were incompatible with FGR2 and FG1 Phantoms and made them difficult and more expensive to maintain. As other Spey Phantom squadrons were being converted to the F3 Tornado, those aircraft became available and replaced the J79 Phantoms in 74 Squadron.


The F3 designation was never officially used merely assumed prior to service entry. Of course the official reference was F-4J(UK). Regards the US helmets, thankfully that was relatively short lived and crews were wearing standard RAF bone domes in no time


The F4Js were amongst the last Phantoms to be built and 12 were procured by the RAF to replace the 12 FGR2s sent south to Stanley after the Falklands war. Funny, nobody worried about commonality or “fleets within fleets” in those days!





The Big Man

Hopefully that photo does not represent 25% of Germany’s air force capability as it would have back in May last yer.


Beat me to it – by a few days !


Interesting the Typhoon shown does not have FLIR – early Tranche 1?


Nope, neither German or Italians use the FLIR


Bloody infuriates me! The RAF because of its vastly reduced size will not rightly priorities 74 so whilst the rest of Europe invent Tiger Sqns just so they can sex up an F-16 or Mirage, were left with Pumas! Every and I mean every decent formation image for the past 30 years has EXCLUDED one of the bloody founding members (RAF) whilst Portugal, Spain, Poland and anyone else that cares to paint Tiger stripes on a fast jet, gets included.

Daniele Mandelli

I doubt the RAF is losing much sleep over it…!


The big point to raise here is the fact that the Germans have an airframe in the bloody air.