Members of 723 Squadron – Joint Helicopter School experienced the trifecta of travel, covering air, land and sea while supporting the World Superbike Championship at Phillip Island in November.
CAPTION: 723 Squadron representatives get their EC-135 training helicopter ready ahead of a big weekend supporting the World Superbike Championship at Phillip Island.
They arrived by air in the EC-135 training helicopter, got up close with the high-performance Superbikes on the ground and were transited to the island each day by an HMAS Cerberus workboat.
The static display of an EC-135 helicopter gave the public and Superbike competitors a chance to sit in the pilot’s seat and engage with the Navy aircraft crew.
Leading Seaman Aircrewman Luke Clarke said it was a fantastic opportunity to represent Navy at his favourite track on the Superbike calendar.
“I get to talk to people about two things I am passionate about – helicopters and motorcycles – from a prime spot trackside,” Leading Seaman Clarke said.
The amalgamation of motoring machinery was a dream come true for racegoers and the 723 Squadron crew.
Lieutenant Richard Blessing said the “support from the Superbike fans for the work we do, as well as their interest in the technical and flying aspects of Navy helicopters, has been extremely rewarding”.
Petty Officer Kevin Boer drew comparisons to Navy.
“It is a privilege and interesting to interact directly with the fans, pit crews and riders,” Petty Officer Boer said.
“The similarities between motorsport and naval aviation are significant.”
723 Squadron has supported a number of high-profile public events in 2022, including the Supercars Bathurst 1000 and the MotoGP event, also at Phillip Island.