Tornado F3 in Focus: A Navigator's Eye on Britain's Last Interceptor

Author(s): Dave Gledhill 

ISBN: 9781781553077
Copies in stock: 124

The much troubled yet iconic Tornado F3 is here scrutinised by a best-selling author who served as crew in one.
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The Tornado F2 had a troubled introduction to service. Unwanted by its crews and procured as a political imperative, it was blighted by failures in the acquisition system. It was adapted from a multi-national design, planned by committee, and developed to counter a threat which disappeared. Modified rapidly before it could be sent to war, the Tornado F3 eventually matured into a capable weapons system, but despite datalinks and new air-to-air weapons, its poor reputation sealed its fate.

David Gledhill, a former Tornado F3 navigator, tells the story from an insider’s perspective of the early days as one of the first instructors on the Operational Conversion Unit, through the aircraft’s development and operational testing, to its demise. He reflects on the aircraft’s capabilities and deficiencies, and analyses why it was mostly under-estimated by opponents. Although many books have already described the Tornado F3 in detail, Gledhill’s involvement in its development provides a unique insight into this complex and misunderstood aircraft programme, dispelling some of the myths that have dogged its reputation for decades. This is Gledhill’s third book, and like the others, it captures the story in pictures taken in the cockpit and around the squadron.


BOOK ISBN 9781781553077
FORMAT 248 x 172 mm
BINDING hardback
PAGES 288 pages
ILLUSTRATIONS 123 black-and-white and 62 colour photographs

Dave Gledhill is an aviation enthusiast and aviator. Having been awarded his pilot's licence at the age of 17, he was commissioned in the RAF in 1974 and trained as an air navigator, before converting to the F4 Phantom in the Air Defence role. After tours in the UK and Germany, he went on to be a radar tactics instructor on the Operational Conversion Unit. One of the first instructors on the new Tornado F2, he eventually became the Executive Officer on the OCU and OC1435 Flight flying the Tornado F3.