Exclusive sneak peek inside a Blue Angel's F/A-18 Super Hornet

NOW: Exclusive sneak peek inside a Blue Angel’s F/A-18 Super Hornet

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) – You may have noticed the skies in Milwaukee last week sounded and looked a little different, thanks to the Navy’s Blue Angels practicing for the Milwaukee Air and Water show!

But what does it look like from inside the jet? In a CBS58 / Telemundo Wisconsin exclusive, Anchor Montse Ricossa took us with her on a once-in-a-lifetime journey inside one of the iconic jets: the FA-18 Super Hornet.

It can take years before one can become a Blue Angel pilot. To become a rider, Ricossa alongside Milwaukee Police Department’s Detective Andrew Wilkiewicz went through some training with Sean Donoghue, Seven Crew Chief for the Blue Angels. Donoghue made sure they knew all it takes to ride the jets, especially when it comes to the intense speeds, reaching over 700 miles per hour.

“It’s going to be very short bursts of energy, you're going to want to strain, tense up your body, and put a lot of pressure for a few seconds,” explained Donoghue.

Once they learned how to brace ourselves and evacuate in case of emergency, it was time to get in the flight suits, get buckled in, and hit the runway!

Lieutenant Commander Thomas Zimmerman is the pilot for Jet 7. He took Ricossa in his jet, shooting vertically into the sky, quickly turning over and upside down right over our hometown.

But as Ricossa soon learned, that was just the beginning. 

Within the first few minutes, LcDr Zimmerman took Ricossa through various maneuvers, including a Double Farvel: “for this maneuver, you can imagine being in the number 4 jet. They’ll fly in formation over us while being upside down in the maneuver.” 

LcDr. Zimmerman said what’s most interesting about this crowd favorite is that “left becomes right, everything’s backwards. Everything’s crazy once we’re upside down!”

Another fan favorite is the Delta Roll maneuver, where the jets will be within 18 inches of each other.

In addition to going hundreds of miles per hour, pilots and passengers are also hit with G's, or the force of acceleration against the earth's gravitational pull. In Ricossa’s case, that meant over 800 pounds of pressure!

From the ground, Ricossa said she always liked when the plane spun, “I don't like that as much from up here!”

Unfortunately, the anti-nausea medicine Ricossa took wasn't a match against all the spins in the jet. Thankfully, she had some barf bags that were put to good use… four times. She exclaimed, “definitely the prettiest place I've thrown up!”

After a minute of taking a light cruise, they were back to feeling light as air. 

On the flight, LcDr. Zimmerman took Ricossa from 7.5 G’s to negative G’s, and even 0! “So you put your arm up in the air, it'll just float. It’s like if you’d be in outer space,” said the pilot.

Almost an hour in the air later taking in the beauty of our city, it was time to land back on their feet.

“Being in the sky was truly an incredible experience! But when these jets head back up to the skies for the air and water show, I'll stay grounded and leave it up to the professionals,” shared Ricossa.

Don’t miss the Milwaukee Air and Water show on July 22 - 23. Find more information at MKEAirWaterShow.com.

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