Watch a US Air Force pilot pull mind-bending moves in the world's most lethal combat plane

F22 raptor thoUS Air Force PhotoAn F-22 Raptor from the Hawaii Air National Guard’s 199th Fighter Squadron returns to a training mission after refuelling March 27, 2012, over the Pacific Ocean near the Hawaiian Islands.

The F-22 Raptor combines extreme stealth with supermaneuverability, and the pilots of the US Air Force, through excellent training, make it the most lethal combat plane in the world.

In the clip below, an F-22 performs several mind-bending moves in the air. More than once, the Raptor goes completely vertical, nose up to the sky, while draining off nearly all of its speed, and for a brief, shining moment, pauses at the crest of it’s ascent.

Then the pilot twists the F-22 into flips and rolls. At one point, the Raptor goes into a “falling leaf” manoeuvre, where it spins and drifts in a way that makes you almost forget that two massive jet engines power it. Seconds later, the engines roar back to life, and the plane is on its way again.

In a dogfight, figures like maximum speed don’t mean a whole lot. Sure, the F-22 can supercruise, but the ability to slow down and bear down on a target matters more in an air-to-air confrontation at close range.

In the clip below, see how a US Air Force pilot in an F-22 owns the sky with incredible maneuvers:

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