The engaged fighter reduces power to approximately 92% and continues his turn. Since your (free
fighter) turn is now outside the engaged fighter, the necessary nose-to-tail separation should quickly
develop. Maintain power at MRT and adjust the nose as necessary to slide into high cover. Three
problems may arise shortly after the reversal: 1) nose-to-tail separation does not adequately
develop, 2) you drift into and on top of the engaged fighter, or 3) you maintain high cover too long
generating too much nose-to-tail separation. Correct by momentarily rolling wings level to place your
back outside his turn.
High cover is an offensive free fighter position. To maintain high cover and preserve your vertical
separation, reduce AOB as necessary to hold up the nose. Remain outside the engaged fighters
turn by reducing AOB until proper nose-to-tail separation develops. Adjust your radius of turn to
maintain position as necessary.
The free fighter flies to low cover when called on to engage or whenever he needs to close nose-to-
tail distance. The low-cover position is inside the engaged fighters turn at 4 or 8 oclock, but no
closer than 500-ft nose-to-tail separation. As the free fighter, you may be called on to engage at any
time during the transition from high-to-low cover. Once you have reached approximately 2,000 ft
nose-to-tail, overbank the aircraft down and inside the engaged fighters turn, smoothly pulling your
nose in front of the engaged fighter (lead pursuit). You will close on the engaged fighter and be in
position to assume the role of engaged fighter, if necessary. When transitioning from high-to-low or
low-to-high cover, transmit your intentions and check the engaged fighters sixfor example,
Murphs high cover, going low, your six is clear.
Do not allow too much closure to develop through an excessive lead pursuit angle or increased
airspeed (50 kts overtake maximum). High closure may force you to make a hard, energy-bleeding
roll away to avoid an overshoot. Recognize closure early. It is always better to roll away too soon,
rather than too late. You can successfully transition from high-to-low or low-to-high cover by
smoothly controlling pitch and roll rate. Be fluid, not erratic.
At this point in the exercise, you have three options:
1) Return to high cover when nose-to-tail distance is inside 1,000 ft.
Free fighter: Murphs low cover, going high, your six is clear.
2) Engage at the engaged fighters request.
Engaged fighter: My guns are jammed, can you engage?
Free fighter: Roger, Murphs in.
Engaged fighter: Torchs off.
New engaged fighter: Murphs engaged at your left nine low, bandits on my nose,
New free fighter: Tally, visual, Torchs free.
3) Remain in low cover because nose-to-tail distance is greater than 1,000 ft.