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Greek named best NATO fighter pilot

335 Fighter Squadron Captain Vassilis Kalogeridis was named NATO's best pilot.

Specifically, he was voted the best trainer of the series, "Course Warrior," which translates as the Flyer who other pilots would choose to fly with in combat operations.

According to onalert.gr this distinction came to Greek wings, from the 335 "Tiger" Squadron of the 116th Wing of Araxos. Specifically, the 335 Squadron participated in the Tactical Leadership Program (TLP) for 2018 at Albacete Air Base in Spain.

For this purpose, four of the latest generation aircraft of Hellenic Air Force, F-16 BLK 52+ ADVs, were restationed in Spain from 116 Fighter Wing. Two "Blue" Fighters, two Fighters as "External Fighters - Red Air," two Air Control Specialists, information officers from 343 and 335 Squadrons participated in the mission as trainees.

Also participating were aircraft and trainees from other NATO countries: 4 F-16 from the Netherlands, 4 French Mirage 2000D and 2 Rafale from the French Navy, 2 Italian and 4 German EF-2000 (Eurofighter) and 4 Spanish F-18s. In addition, 2 French Rafale, 2 Spanish EF-2000 (Eurofighter) and 2 Spanish F-18, Helicopters from Spain and Italy, P-3 Naval Support Aircraft, Electronic Warfare Aircraft, NATO AWACS and Italian Phoenix type AWACS.

The 335 Squad officers have received extraordinary reviews for their level of education, their perception, and their effectiveness in all missions they have been asked to perform. Specifically, the Greek formation "Velos" achieved the highest rates among the other participants under the leadership of Squadron commander Georgios Skourgias.

335 Tiger is the oldest Hellenic Air Force Squadron since it was formed when Greece was occupied by the Germans in October 1941 at the Akir airport in Palestine, a few months after the total occupation of Greece by the Germans.
The first pilots of the Squadron were members of the Royal Hellenic Air Force that had been sent to Iraq since 1940 to be trained by the British, as well as several pilots who fled to the area after the occupation of Greece to continue the struggle until its liberation.

The Squadron was equipped with the Hurricane-IIB fighters at the beginning, and then with the Hurricane-IIC and was part of the RAF 339 Wing. With these aircraft iit operated until December 1943, when it replaced them with the more modern Spitfire VB and VC.
From 2009, however, a new era began for both the 335 Squadron and the HAF in general.

The Squadron stopped flying the A-7E and began to pick up the brand-new fourth-generation F-16 BLK 52 (Advanced), in its new facilities built in the area of ​​116 Firghter Wing. Their induction was completed in February 2010.

Now the 335 Squadron undertake the execution of the whole range of Air Missions day and night and under all circumstances.

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