FlightPathTV

DISCOVERY CHANNEL – Mondays from 5 September, 9.30pm

FlightPathTV is an innovative global aviation show providing an entertaining, action packed and informative look inside the world of aviation. Narrated by avid aviator, Richie McCaw, each week FlightPathTV puts the viewer in the pilot’s seat and takes them on an aviation adventure. Travel behind the scenes to some of the biggest and best air shows and events, meet some of the worlds best pilots and get an exclusive look at historic aircrafts. Put your seat in the upright position and prepare for take-off on FlightPathTV

FlightPathTV is an innovative global aviation show providing an entertaining, action packed and informative look inside the world of aviation.

Narrated by avid aviator, Richie McCaw, each week FlightPathTV puts the viewer in the pilot’s seat and takes them on an aviation adventure.

Travel behind the scenes to some of the biggest and best air shows and events, meet some of the worlds best pilots and get an exclusive look at historic aircrafts.

Put your seat in the upright position and prepare for take-off on FlightPathTV premiering exclusively on Discovery Channel, Monday nights at 9.30pm (NZST) beginning September 5.

Avid Aviator, Richie McCaw said of his involvement with the documentary series, “My grandad was a fighter pilot and I’ve been flying with my Dad since I was nine, so aviation is in my blood. I am thrilled to be working with Discovery Channel on FlightPathTV as it has given me the opportunity to share my passion with a like-minded audience.”

Filmed by two New Zealand entrepreneurs, Fletcher McKenzie and Malcolm Clement of Leading Edge Media Ltd, and with support from the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF), the series took over two years to film.

The RNZAF aerobatic team takes viewers on several exciting exercises around New Zealand, introducing us to incredible pilots on both sides of the Tasman, including Matt Hall, an aerobatic pilot, Gulf War jet-fighter veteran and Red Bull Air Racer. Matt puts you in the pilot’s seat for some extreme aerobatics during his ‘In the Loop’ segments.

Filmed in high definition, FlightPathTV includes 10 action packed episodes with over 50 stories, told by Richie McCaw, from around the globe. Viewers have the chance to travel the length and breadth of New Zealand from some of the highest points in the Southern Alps, to the beauty of Central Otago, Canterbury, Taranaki, King Country, Bay of Plenty, Auckland and Northland.

So buckle up and get ready for the most spectacular ride of your life as Richie McCaw shares his expert knowledge on all things aviation on FlightPathTV.

 

FlightPathTV episode descriptions:

 

Episode 1 

Air Races and Air Forces

This episode invites viewers behind the scenes of what has been described as the ‘Worlds Fastest Motor Sport’ at the Reno Air Races. We then travel down-under with the Royal New Zealand Air Force to go mountain flying in the treacherous Southern Alps in New Zealand. Meet the driving force behind MD Helicopters and profile their revolutionary technology, then get on board the largest Airliner in the world. 

Finally, viewers are introduced to a retired US Air Force Colonel who flew fighters on D-Day and went onto fly Presidents on Air Force One.

 

Episode 2 

Innovation and Action

This episode heads down-under on a white-knuckle ride with the Royal New Zealand Air Force aerobatic team, then climbs on board the deadliest bomber in the US Air Force and introduces viewers to its 28 year old pilot. 

Viewers then go racing and party with the legendary Warlock Race Team at Reno and check out the new addition to the Cessna family. Later they meet a US World War II bomber pilot who reveals the Allies secret weapon.

 

Episode 3 

Explosions and Elegance

In this episode, viewers join the action on board a Navy warship during a joint-force exercise and ride along on a Navy helicopter during a live firing of a Maverick Missile. They then check out an Italian Sports-car for the sky being built by two brothers realising their father’s dream. 

Later, a Jelly Bean eating stunt pilot who lands on-top of moving trucks is featured, as well as the last surviving ‘Dam Buster’ Lancaster bomber pilot from WWII. Viewers also get a special guided tour around the legendary Planes of Fame in Chino USA.

 

Episode 4

Outback and Inverted

This episode kicks off by meeting the ‘Air Bandits’ – a motley trio of extreme aerobatic pilots led by Lithuanian legend Jurgis Kairys. The iconic F-16 fighter is then profiled and viewers hear first hand about close encounters with heat seeking missiles in combat. 

Then we head down-under into the Australian Outback to take an exclusive inside look at the Temora Aviation Museum and meet its multi-millionaire owner who takes a hands-on approach when it comes to collecting and flying his own collection of rare warbird aircraft. 

Viewers then visit a military exercise at high speed and low level as a C-130 Hercules crew is put through their paces in the treacherous Southern Alps during Exercise SkyTrain.

 

Episode 5 

Flying Aces and Exotic Places

This episode features Red Bull Air Race pilot and US aerobatic legend, Mike Goulian, as he provides an inside look into what it takes to be the world’s best. We then travel to Waikiki to go flying with Hawaii’s first family of helicopters with over 120 years history in the islands. 

Next, viewers meet a World War II fighter pilot who flew Spitfires with the legendary 485 Squadron of the Royal Air Force and hear first-hand about the fierce battles and near misses that nearly took his life. 

Finally, the iconic Tiger Moth bi-plane from the 1930’s is profiled and viewers get a private flight from a secluded grass airstrip with a master pilot.

 

Episode 6 

Past, Present and Future Flight

This episode features the Crocodile Dundee of aerobatics, 13 times Australian aerobatic champion Chris Sperou, famous for his high speed inverted ribbon cut only metres from the ground. We then follow an Air Force precision helicopter display team preparing for a major international airshow. 

Next it takes a special look at the world’s best WWI aviation museum where the Red Baron flies again. Viewers are then invited on board the newest addition to the Australian Air Forces tactical transport fleet to hear the extreme result of what happens when you reverse all four jet engines while in flight! 

Finally, we take an exclusive look at the future of 21st Century air power and how its pilot can literally see through this new fighter aircraft.

 

Episode 7 

Something Old, Someone New

In this episode, a classic two seat Boeing as flown by a former US President during his Air Force training is profiled and then viewers get an inside guided tour of the legendary F-111 famous for its impressive fuel dump and burn. 

Viewers are then taken south of Sydney Australia to meet a dedicated group of volunteers who are bringing iconic Intercontinental and Cold War era aircraft back to life, and later take part in a national flying camp for teenagers led by an Air Force Chaplain who loves old cars, old planes and old flying helmets.

 

Episode 8 

Historic Planes and Modern Pilots

This episode travels back to the skies above Europe during WWI when gentlemen pilots went into battle flying wood and fabric aircrafts, then viewers meet an airline pilot who in his spare time flies a terrifying fighter from WWII nicknamed ‘Whistling Death’. 

Next, viewers meet a 38 year old legendary aerobatic pilot, Gulf War jet-fighter veteran and Red Bull Air Racer Matt Hall, and travel to Pearl Harbour Hawaii to visit the Pacific Aviation Museum and target of the Japanese attack – complete with bullet holes and bomb craters. 

Later, we get a special invitation to go flying in close formation with the Royal Australian Air Force Roulettes display team.

 

Episode 9 

Classic and Contemporary

This episode kicks off by checking out a tandem skydive business owned by an amazing and inspirational pilot, who has literally risen from the ashes after surviving an explosive plane crash and six months in a coma. Following this, Red Bull Air Race pilot Matt Hall puts viewers in the pilot’s seat for some extreme aerobatics, as he demonstrates the first of five ‘In the Loop’ aerobatic segments.

Next, Boeing’s test pilot who is putting the new Super Hornet through its paces is featured and viewers join the international crew of a P-3 Orion during an anti-submarine warfare patrol. 

We then check out the Classic Flyers Museum where the attraction is not only the great collection of aircraft but also the local personalities which include world record holders and combat pilots.

 

Episode 10

Combat Legends

In this episode, viewers check out all the action at the National Helicopter Championships and get back in the pilot’s seat for an inside look at the challenges of extreme aerobatics with Matt Hall and his ‘In the Loop’ aerobatic segment. 

Featured next is a WWII combat pilot who is being reunited for the first time in over 65 years with one of the last surviving fighters. After numerous dog-fights and raids on enemy ground targets, viewers will hear how close he came to death, more than once. 

Finally, viewers find out that there is a lot more than meets the eye when it comes to banner towing – especially if you’re a new pilot!