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Making a welcome return to the Air Tattoo this year is the Swiss Air Force with their F/A-18C Hornet solo display which will be flown by Captain Yannick Zanata aka 'Fönsi' from Fliegerstaffel 17 based at Payerne Air Base located just to the west of the Swiss Capital, Bern. The F/A-18 Hornet is a twin-engined, supersonic multi-role combat jet that is designed to carry out air-to-air missions and attack ground targets. Tracing its lineage back to the YF-17 Cobra which competed against the YF-16 in the US Air Force Light Weight Fighter competition during the mid-1970s with the original F/A-18A Hornet entered service with the US Navy in 1983. Entering service with the Swiss Air Force in 1997, the updated F/A-18C Hornet has proved itself well suited to operations in Switzerland's mountainous regions and narrow valleys as well as from the relatively short runways of its military airfields. Swiss Hornets benefit from an upgraded flight control system which, among other things, allows the display pilot to perform extreme high alpha manoeuvres during their performance. This in part has earned this solo fast jet display a reputation as one of the best on the European circuit.