The Frecce Tricolori are the current Italian Air Force aerobatic display team. The team is a separate unit from the Air Force - 313° Gruppo Addestramento Acrobatico or Pattuglia Acrobatica Nazionale (PAN) on Italian language.
The team consist of 13 Italian-made Aermacchi MB339 jet trainers, only 10 of which actually take part in airshows. The remaining three are spare aircraft.
All team members carry call-sign “Pony”, followed by the number of the team aircraft. “Pony #0” is flown by the commanding officer of the squadron. The CO must be a former team member but he doesn’t fly in the actual demonstrations. The formation team leader flies Pony #1 and he must also have flown with the team previously. The team’s solo pilot flies in the #10 position. All candidate pilots for the Frecce Tricolori must have accumulated a minimum of 750 flying hours on jet aircraft.
The support team consists of approximately 60 members, who carry the responsibility for the ongoing support of the team aircraft, administration and other support duties.
Each show season for the Frecce Tricolori begins on 1 May and includes of approximately 35 air demonstrations. The team has three types of shows depending on the weather condition - low, flat and full.
After each 60 flying hours, the team’s aircraft must have a regular service check. The team's aircraft are each equipped with smoke generators capable of emitting green, red and white colored smoke.