Regional carrier Alliance Airlines is celebrating the 90th anniversary of the first trans-Pacific crossing with a special livery Fokker 100 and a commemorative beer to be offered on its flights.
The aircraft, VH-FGB, has an image of Sir Charles Kingsford Smith on the tail, while the fuselage features the Fokker F.VIIb/3m Trimotor, named “Southern Cross“, the aircraft used for the successful crossing in 1928.
The Fokker 100 was repainted into the special livery at Norwich in the United Kingdom and then ferried to Australia.
The aircraft departed Norwich in the United Kingdom on January 13, stopping at Trabzon (Turkey), Al Ain (United Arab Emirates), Hyderabad (India), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), Kupang (Indonesia) and Townsville before arriving in Brisbane on Thursday, flight tracking website FlightRadar24 shows.
Sir Charles and fellow Australian pilot Charles Ulm, as well as radio operator James Warner and navigator/engineer Harry Lyon from the United States, flew the Southern Cross from Oakland in California to Eagle Farm Airport in Brisbane over a 10-day period in 1928, stopping at Hawaii and Fiji enroute.
The 6,300nm journey began on May 31 1928 and ended on June 9 1928. It was the first-ever trans-Pacific flight from the United States mainland to Australia.
The Southern Cross is on display in a special memorial near Brisbane Airport’s international terminal.
Meanwhile, Alliance, which is the largest operator of Fokker aircraft in the world, has also launched a commemorative beer to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the Southern Cross’s Pacific crossing.
Made by Newstead Brewing Co and called Smithy’s FGB, it will be the only beer available for purchase on all Alliance flights.