F-35 training on track? (Not quite)

Navy Times has an important article today on the 33rd Operations Group, the F-35 training unit for pilots and maintainers. The headline says “F-35 pilot training on track”. Thanks to the data in the article, however, we know that’s not entirely accurate. The article says:




• Air Force: 58th Fighter Squadron stood up in October. Has seven officers and one enlisted airman. First F-35A expected to arrive this fall.

• Marine Corps: VMFA-501 stood up April 2. Has eight officers and 23 enlisted Marines. First F-35B expected to arrive spring 2011.

• Navy: VFA-101 stands up in October 2011. First pilots expected to arrive in early 2011. First F-35C expected to arrive in early 2012.

This means the first arrivals for the F-35A and F-35B are delayed six months, and only the F-35C remains on track, according to September 2008 program schedule shown below. (The slide comes from presentation to an economic development council in Florida.)

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19 Responses to F-35 training on track? (Not quite)

  1. John S 5 April, 2010 at 1:52 pm #

    Air Force: 58th Fighter Squadron stood up in October. Has seven officers and one enlisted airman. First F-35A expected to arrive this fall.

    LOL! Typical Air Force officer/enlisted ratio!

  2. Stephen Trimble 5 April, 2010 at 1:54 pm #

    Ha! I’m an air force brat, so I can relate. Very funny.

  3. Weaponhead 5 April, 2010 at 1:57 pm #

    Was: It depends on the meaning of the word :”is”

    Now: It depends on the meaning of the word :”on-track”

  4. Underhill 5 April, 2010 at 3:41 pm #

    As Bill Sweetman has put it: “The Donner Party were on track. They were not on schedule”.

  5. Dave 5 April, 2010 at 6:26 pm #

    That’s what their Vice-Commander told me as well… They start training the first class in June. They’re making adjustments for factors beyond their control,but everything is basically on track assuming the aircraft arrive in the fall.

  6. jetcal1 5 April, 2010 at 7:27 pm #

    The Italians and French have been castigated in history books for having too many types of aircraft in inventory during WWII instead of concentrating on one type.
    I wonder if we are about to do the opposite.

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