Warbirds Over the Beach Airshow 2 (Bleriot XI)

Spent the week before down in Virginia Beach at the “Warbirds Over the Beach” airshow. This second post on the air show includes some more of the pictures I took, although they are far from “professional”

In their museum is a Bleriot XI. It did not fly. This airplane may have been the second most significant airplane in history, after the various Wright Flyers. It was primarily designed by Raymond Saulnier. It relied upon the Wright brothers “wing warping” for lateral control, vice using ailerons. Over a thousand were manufactured between 1909 and 1914.

Louis Bleriot flew this plane over the English channel in 1909. It was also used by Adolphe Pegoud for his various inverted flight and loop demonstrations in 1913. The first British pilots to conduct loops also used this plane.

You are able to get up close and personal with the planes.

Raymond Saulnier designed the very similar looking Morane-Saulnier, which Roland Garros flew across the Mediterranean from southern France to Tunis. The Morane-Saulnier was pretty much just copied to create the Fokker Eindecker that started the Fokker Scourge of 1915-1916. 

Morane Saulnier G (from Wikipedia)
Fokker E III Eindecker – 1916 (from Wikipedia)


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Christopher A. Lawrence
Christopher A. Lawrence

Christopher A. Lawrence is a professional historian and military analyst. He is the Executive Director and President of The Dupuy Institute, an organization dedicated to scholarly research and objective analysis of historical data related to armed conflict and the resolution of armed conflict. The Dupuy Institute provides independent, historically-based analyses of lessons learned from modern military experience.
Mr. Lawrence was the program manager for the Ardennes Campaign Simulation Data Base, the Kursk Data Base, the Modern Insurgency Spread Sheets and for a number of other smaller combat data bases. He has participated in casualty estimation studies (including estimates for Bosnia and Iraq) and studies of air campaign modeling, enemy prisoner of war capture rates, medium weight armor, urban warfare, situational awareness, counterinsurgency and other subjects for the U.S. Army, the Defense Department, the Joint Staff and the U.S. Air Force. He has also directed a number of studies related to the military impact of banning antipersonnel mines for the Joint Staff, Los Alamos National Laboratories and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation.
His published works include papers and monographs for the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation, in addition to over 40 articles written for limited-distribution newsletters and over 60 analytical reports prepared for the Defense Department. He is the author of Kursk: The Battle of Prokhorovka (Aberdeen Books, Sheridan, CO., 2015), America’s Modern Wars: Understanding Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam (Casemate Publishers, Philadelphia & Oxford, 2015), War by Numbers: Understanding Conventional Combat (Potomac Books, Lincoln, NE., 2017) , The Battle of Prokhorovka (Stackpole Books, Guilford, CT., 2019), The Battle for Kyiv (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2023), Aces at Kursk (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024), Hunting Falcon: The Story of WWI German Ace Hans-Joachim Buddecke (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024) and The Siege of Mariupol (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2024).
Mr. Lawrence lives in northern Virginia, near Washington, D.C., with his wife and son.

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