HMAS Sydney Shines in Fleet Review

HMAS Sydney Shines in Fleet Review

HMAS Sydney (IV) has proudly represented Australia at one of the most significant ceremonial events in Japan’s calendar, the triennial Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF) International Fleet Review (IFR), on October 14.

Sydney (IV) took her place within an armada of fifty spectacular ships in a choreographed showcase of grace and power, lighting up an overcast Sagami Bay 40km southwest of Tokyo.

Sydney (IV) was the lead international ship at the invitation only event, sailing ahead of Republic of Singapore Ship (RSS) Persistence and United States Ship (USS) Shiloh as the Celebratory Cruise Units.

With Mt. Fuji providing a distant backdrop, submarines performed surfacing manoeuvres, destroyers conducted tactical manoeuvring and patrol boats demonstrated high speed navigation displays.

A fleet of aircraft, ranging from Chinook helicopters to Sea Planes, performed low altitude flyby’s in groups of two and three.

CO HMAS Sydney, CAPT Luke Charles-Jones said, it was great honour to participate in the Fleet Review.

“We are proud to represent Australia at the International Fleet Review,” said CAPT Charles-Jones.

“The JMSDF have certainly put on a great show today. Throughout our visit, their planning has been meticulous and their hospitality fantastic,” he said.

Ships then sailed past the Reviewing Officer, Japans’ Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, onboard the Review Flag Ship, JS Kurama.

It was the 60th Anniversary of the JMSDF Review and the first time international ships have sailed, rather than remaining at anchor.

Sydney (IV)’s crew took in the spectacle from the upper decks as they manned ship for the salute.

SBLT Michael Albert said the Review was an awesome sight.

“It was such a prestigious event for all the countries participating,” said SBLT Albert.

“It is also great experience for all the newcomers to the RAN, to be involved in an International Fleet Review and to view it from 02 deck was terrific,” he said.

Sydney (IV)’s participation in the Japanese Fleet Review highlighted the strong defence relationship between the two countries, which is based on shared values, strategic interests and our alliance with the US.

It also presented an opportunity to prepare for Australia’s own International Fleet Review, scheduled for October 2013, when Sydney Harbour will host the largest gathering of Maritime might since the Bicentennial in 1988.

HMAS Sydney (IV) will now take part in Exercise LUMBAS in the Philippines and conduct port visits to Manila, Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam and Brunei before heading home via Cairns in November.

View images from HMAS Sydney’s North and South East Asia Deployment on the Royal Australian Navy Media Library.

Naval Today Staff,October 15, 2012; Image: Australian Navy