PICTURES, VIDEO

Proud to be involved in Singapore Airshow for the first time: Indonesian pilot

The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
The Indonesian Jupiter Aerobatic Team performs at the Singapore Airshow 2014 on Feb 11. -- ST PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN

Flying to Singapore is nothing new for Indonesian Jupiter pilot Captain Apri Arfianto, who has trained here six times, but the 32-year-old will be participating in the Singapore Airshow for the first time.

This week's airshow will be the Indonesian Jupiters' third international appearance - they have performed in Brunei and Malaysia previously.

"I'm very proud to take part in such a big Asian airshow... it's been my most challenging experience so far," said Captain Apri, who flies as the left wingman in his six-man squad.

To stay in tip-top physical condition, he makes sure that he has enough rest and goes for a brisk jog for about 15 to 20 minutes daily.

Captain Apri, who has more than 2,500 hours of flying experience under his belt, told The Straits Times that he had aspired to be a pilot since his days in junior high school. Getting handpicked for one of the coveted Jupiter slots was a career highlight for him, he said.

"It is really about who has the skill to fly in close formation and perform aerobatics," added Captain Apri, who has been with the Indonesian Air Force for a decade.

Back at home in Jogjakarta, he and his teammates are flight instructors at the Indonesian Air Force Flying School. The team's name originated from their call sign - Jupiter is an abbreviation for "Juru Pendidik Terbang", which translates to "air educators".

Captain Apri also enjoys spending time with his friends and family - he is married with a two-year-old son, and will soon welcome another son, who is expected to be born next month.

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