NZ Warbirds

Roaring Forties

Display Team

The ‘flag bearers’ of New Zealand Warbirds, this precision formation team can be been seen at air shows right across New Zealand.

Flying ex-RNZAF Harvard trainers, this team continues to promise maximum visual impact and crowd enjoyment – never to be missed! We continue to honour those that ensured our freedom by serving in the armed forces by carrying out fly-pasts at events such as ANZAC and Battle of Britain commemorative days.

Dave Brown Red 1

The team leader of the Roaring Forties is Dave Brown who flies Harvard 98 (NZ1098). Dave joined the RNZAF in 1978 and flew Skyhawks with No. 75 Squadron and was the Strikemaster display pilot in 1988 and 1989. He has been with the team since 2008 and has recently retired from airline flying. As well as the team leader, Dave is also the Chief Flying Instructor (CFI) for NZ Warbirds.

Dean BeverleyRed 2

Number 2 is Dean Beverley who flies Harvard 52 (NZ1052). Dean joined the RNZAF in 1978 with Dave and flew Andovers, C130 Hercules and Boeing 727’s. Dean has also recently retired from airline flying and is the Deputy Chief Flying Instructor (DCFI) for NZ Warbirds. He joined the Roaring Forties team in 2018.

Liz Needham Red 3

Number 3 is Liz Needham in Harvard 57 (NZ1057). Liz first soloed on Valentines day in 1974 (hence her love affair with flying) and has over twenty thousand flight hours, possibly NZ’s’ most experienced aviatrix in such a diverse variety of aircraft. Liz is has recently retired from airline flying and has been in the team for 12 years.

John Kelly Red 4

Number 4 is John Kelly in Harvard 53 (NZ1053). John started his flying career through the Aero Club environment in the 1980's and is a current commercial pilot and flight instructor. He has been in the team for the past 13 years and is the current Vice President of NZ Warbirds.

Rob SilichRed 5

Number 5 is Rob Silich in Harvard NZ1078. He performs the solo routines between formation manoeuvres during the display. Rob is a PPL who has been flying since 1986. He has a background in competition aerobatics and is a professional engineer with a passion for all ‘things’ mechanical. Formation aerobatics in a historic aircraft is a perfect blend of both

  • What a birthday gift from my family. A stunning flight and my wife said my smile after climbing (clambering) out of the cockpit was to be seen. Gary my pilot was totally professional and made it all so enjoyable.

    Malcolm G June 2019

  • Wow, thats an amzing day full of discovery and nature. Loved the cruise! You guys rock.

    Mike McVey Gisborne NZ

  • Lovely cafe with a great view of all the planes taking off. The museum guides are super friendly and my son absolutely loves coming here. Highly recommended.

    Dianechen10 February 2020

  • Fantastic opportunity to get up close to some of the icons of New Zealand’s aviation history - with the majority being flyable examples. Knowable guides to fill in any gaps in your own knowledge. Topped off by an amazing scale model collection.

    MarkR986 October 2020

  • Interesting guided visit around the War Birds Facility, get up close to the war planes. Beautiful display. Would suggest combine with a visit to the Auckland Botanical Gardens. A Great Auckland Day Out.

    Sandra S February 2020

  • On the Ardmore Airport (the busiest airport in the southern hemisphere) are two hangers of war planes. I have lived nearby for years and the planes often fly over my house but I have never before visited the exhibition. They have a Spitfire, a P45 Mustang, a Skyhawk and many many more aircraft. Almost all of them still fly. I was fascinated by the pre-WWII planes. The beauty of the engineering is fascinating and there are not many places you can get so close to the planes. You can also pay to have a flight in many of he planes. That is something I am planning for later in the year. The staff were all very helpful and knowledgeable. I will be taking all my visitors there in future.

    Howard A January 2020

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NZ Warbirds at Ardmore - closing early Sunday 26th June at 2pm for private function.