Two Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornets and an EA-18G Growler touched down at Pirkkala Air Base in Finland on Feb. 18 as part of the country’s HX Challenge. The two week flight evaluation is part of the process Finland is using to determine which strike fighter it will purchase to replace its F/A-18 Hornets.
The Boeing team is one of five competitors including the Eurofighter Typhoon, Rafale, Gripen and the F-35.
The flight evaluations offer Finland’s Defence Forces a unique opportunity to “test drive” each competitor’s aircraft against the mission sets laid out in the Request for Quotation against the backdrop of its operating environment.
“This is the second flight evaluation that the F/A-18 Super Hornet has participated in over the last 12 months, the first being in Switzerland, and the first for the EA-18G Growler,” said Alain Garcia, Capture Team Lead for Finland and Switzerland for Defense, Space and Security. “Being able to showcase the capabilities of our aircraft in Finland, with Finnish operators, gives us the opportunity to demonstrate what we’ve put in our offering is true – and it’s an incredibly important step that brings us closer to contract award.”
The HX Challenge continues through Feb. 26, and includes numerous flights, meetings and other activities between Boeing and the Finnish air force.