Slivers demonstration duo logo

In 1969, Major Steve Nuyts and Adjutant Chef Palmer De Vlieger, both pilots from No. 350 Squadron of the Belgian Air Force were selected to form a demonstration duo flying with F-104G Starfighters. One technician was also appointed to the team.

On 14 May 1969, at graduation ceremony at Brustem AB, this new two-ship F-104 Starfighter aerobatic team performed its first demonstration.

The name of the team was derived from famous Lockheed test pilot Glenn "Snake" Reaves who proclaimed the F-104 prototype aircraft as the "Silver Sliver" because of its long shiny fuselage and stubby wings. This nickname was also used by the Belgian pilots and so they decided that "Slivers" was the appropriate name for the team.

The "Slivers" Starfighters were painted in two tones of green and tan with grey on the underside. The team's logo was painted on both intakes of the team aircraft. In 1972 this logo was replaced with the "SLIVERS" inscription painted in white. The logo was replaced, since poor quality red paint in the logo would lose its color after only a few flights.

The "Slivers" display was concluded with a crossing maneuver at speeds from 550 to 750 km/h. The pilots used the edge of the runaway for their display axis while crossing, with one of the pilots flying over the grass and the other over the runaway. At their crossing their separation distance was only approximately 2 meters apart.

In July 1975, the "Slivers" were disbanded, as Major Steve Nuyts was recalled for other duties and there were no other candidates to replace him. Up until that point, the "Slivers" had performed 68 official demonstrations in five countries including Belgium, United Kingdom, Germany, France and Italy.

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