Hear from the excited pilots who are set to wow crowds in Sunderland Airshow today

Pilots who are set to entertain thousands of fans at the Sunderland International Airshow today have told of their excitement.

The second day of the ever-popular event is taking place this afternoon.

Crowds are set to flock to the Sunderland International Airshow.

Crowds are set to flock to the Sunderland International Airshow.

Lance Corporal Chris Smith, 31, will be part of it with the Tigers Freefall Parachute Display Team from the Princess of Wales' Royal Regiment.

He said: "It's great fun.

"It's my first time in Sunderland, but I got such a feel for the place last night with so many people watching.

"We're going to be running our aircraft in at about 6,000ft, reaching speeds of about 120mph.

Lance Corporal Chris Smith.

Lance Corporal Chris Smith.

"If the weather is good, we'll crash our parachutes into each other, and do formations and displays in the sky with our parachutes.

"It's an absolute privilege to be a part of this event."

Peter Davies, of Gyro Air Displays, added: "I'll be within about 75 metres of the crowd line, so if you see me waving, please wave back, because I can see you all.

"I'll be wearing a pair of coloured gloves, so if you see me, wave at me please.

Peter Davies

Peter Davies

"We're here for one reason: to make the day fun.

"This is my second year here, and it's really, really inspiring to see the number of people who enjoy what we do."

Lieutenant Chris Rebbeck, 31, of the Royal Navy, is part of the Black Cats flying display team.

And as he explains, Wearside is a very fitting venue for the team to show their talents, with Sunderland AFC sharing their nickname.

He said: "Sunderland is perfect for us because of the Black Cats link

"We attended last night's show, and we couldn't believe how many people were watching on a Friday night.

"Trying to walk back through the crowds was carnage!"