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PAF s' Aerobatics Profile
Red Dragons
According to Air Marshal Zafar Chaudhry, "After seeing the Risalpur air display, 9 Squadron was inspired to muster a proper 4-man team. The overall experience level in squadrons being rather low, it was unrealistic to expect the young pilots to be skilful enough to format. Hence the unusual situation where the squadron commander and flight commander were the wingman while a junior pilot was their leader." This first formation aerobatic team, flying Furies was called 'Red Dragons', after the motif in 9 Squadron's crest. The 'Red Dragons', performed officially for the first time on the occasion of Air Vice Marshal Atcherley's farewell ceremonies in 1951. Subsequently 14 Squadron also formed their own Fury team which performed on a few occasions. Later, in 1952, 11 Squadron formed a team with the curious name 'Paybill', which happened to be their squadron's call sign. This was the first jet aircraft formation team, flying the squadron's Attackers.

A very impressive air display was held on February 26, 1955 at Lahore where the defence minister General Ayub Khan reviewed a parade prior to the flying events. On this occasion, 33 Harvards in immaculate formation spelled the letters 'RPAF' over the parade; later in the display, 27 of them formed a crescent and star, the motif on the Pakistan national flag. An exhilarating aerobatic demonstration was given on a glider by Flight Lieutenant Mikulski whose act had become a regular feature of RPAF displays: his concluding loop used to bottom out at less than 50 feet above the ground. Solo as well as formation aerobatics were performed both on Furies and Attackers. The final was a 'set piece' demonstration of an air force/army assault in which 6 Furies and 6 Attackers, using live ammunition razed a mock up fort to the ground while 9 freighters carried out an accurate supply drop in formation.

A year later, when Pakistan proclaimed itself a republic, a display was held at Drigh Road on March 23, 1956 to mark the occasion. President Iskander Mirza watched the demonstration which included the usual repertoire of solo and formation aerobatics, this time also by T-33s, as well as a fire power demonstration. The ubiquitous Harvard sky writers commemorated the deletion of the prefix 'Royal' from the air force's title by spelling just 'PAF' for the first time. As a finale, 23 Furies drew thunderous applause from the huge crowd when they appeared over the horizon forming the letters 'IRP', for the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

Prior to 1965, 14th August used to be the sole national day in Pakistan on which a joint parade accompanied by a fly-past used to be held in Karachi. After the RPAF's modest start with the 4 Tempests in 1947, the annual fly-past grew year by year, both in size and in variety of aircraft. Uptil the mid-1950s, various combinations and patterns of Furies, Attackers, T-33s, Freighters, even Halifaxes, were flown to reflect the growing size and versatility of the air force.
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