NTSB Identification: FTW97FA207.
The docket is stored in the Docket Management System (DMS). Please contact Records Management Division
Accident occurred Sunday, June 01, 1997 in BROOMFIELD, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/22/2000
Aircraft: Canadair F-86E MK.6, registration: N86EX
Injuries: 1 Fatal,2 Minor.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

During an airshow, the pilot was performing a reverse half-Cuban eight. He flew down the runway at approximately 400 feet above ground level (agl) and pulled up using a 45-degree nose up attitude. At approximately 2,500 feet agl, the pilot rolled the aircraft inverted and pulled to a vertical nose down attitude. He failed to recover from the dive and the aircraft struck the ground in a 5-degree nose down attitude with a high sink rate. Ground speed at the time of impact was approximately 485 knots. According to persons at the airshow who are aerobatics pilots, the maneuver being performed by this aircraft should be started no lower than 4,000 feet agl, and part of the altitude gain should be used to bleed off excess airspeed. Videos of the performance depict the speed brakes deployed, the vertical stabilizer moving up and down, and the leading edge devices deployed while the aircraft was in the dive.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

Inadequate planning and decision making by the pilot in starting the aerobatic maneuver at an insufficient altitude to successfully complete the maneuver.

Full narrative available

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