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F-16 to rip through the skies for 'Thunder Over Louisville'

Just one F-16 will be joining us for Thunder, but our aviation expert says even just one of these aircraft will be a treat for the Ohio Valley.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — With Thunder Over Louisville right around the corner, we're taking a look at some of the high-flying acts you can expect to see.

Aviation expert Retired Brigadier General Rob Givens is providing insight on the capabilities of the F-16 and why they're the plane of choice for the USAF Demonstration Squadron.

Just one F-16 will be joining us for Thunder, but Givens says even just one of these aircraft will be a treat for the Ohio Valley.

"You get to hear what it sounds like," Rob said of what to expect from the single craft show. "It's loud and the afterburner is intense. You kinda get an impression of what airpower is all about. Even seeing one flyby is a neat thing. In Louisville, we don't have an Air Force Base near us, we have Air National Guard at Louisville International, so we don't get to see fighters flying around the city quite a bit."

Rob is an expert on F-16's because he flew them himself. He's clocked over 2,000 hours and was a member of the Thunderbirds.

"They bring airpower to the American public, the public of international countries as well," Rob said of the purpose of the Thunderbirds. "They serve to help recruit, but send a message about what the US Air Force is capable of."

F-16's are flown by the Thunderbirds because they are the primary fighter for the Air Force. They use precision, skill, and aircraft capability during airshows to show the audience all the ways the F-16 is used.

"It's capable of pulling 9 G's," Rob said, G meaning gravitational force. "It's two times the speed of sound is the max speed. It carries the whole host of ordinance that the Air Force uses today. It's an all-around great aircraft. "

Retired Brigadier General Rob Givens will join Hayley Minogue and Doug Proffitt for the Air Show portion of Thunder Over Louisville on April 17th. You can only watch it right here on WHSA11 News.

RELATED: Fireworks, air show to be held in 'undisclosed locations' for Thunder Over Louisville 2021

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