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Grumman’s F-14 Tomcat is arguably the most iconic jet fighter to come out of the 1970s. Although the F-15 Eagle and F-16 Fighting Falcon also started in that era, Tomcats’ distinct design and sheer size made it an aircraft to remember.
As the aging F-4 Phantom II fleet needed to be replaced, the Navy called for a tactical fighter that had better radar detection and range to confront the Soviet Union. From this proposal came the Tomcat with its iconic variable swept wings and by 1973 they joined the fleet.
As you can imagine, Tomcats were a hit when they finally showed up at air shows around the United States and the pilots didn’t waste time showing their capabilities. One such display was caught on camera in the 1990s although we can’t pinpoint where this took place.
As the video below will show you, the F-14 could take off with afterburners and make an immediate bank after leaving the ground. Within a short period of time (still at low altitude) the pilot transitioned to inverted flight, something we’ll probably never see with our own eyes due to more modern regulations.