Two state-of-the-art F-35 Fighter Jets were OUTRUN by an old, large, bulky, Russian T-160 Bomber over the Sea of Japan on Nov. 3, as the F-35's attempted to intercept the T-160.
The American fighters “lost sight” of the Russian Aerospace Force bomber, which easily moved away from them.
The Tu-160 was performing a routine flight on November 3 over the Japan Sea when two F-35s approached, one on either side, intending to escort him. At this point, the Russian bomber suddenly accelerated, triggering the afterburner and increasing the speed to Mach 2.05.
The two F-35A fighters also reacted, but a little too late. When the acceleration was turned on, the F-35 radar still detected the Tu-160, but the pilots no longer saw it.
Noteworthy while the Tu-160 has a top speed of Mach 2.05 (1570 mph) the F-35A reaches Mach 1.6 (1200 mph).
The 110-ton Russian aircraft was able to easily move away from the 13-ton American fighters.
Fighters from NATO and Allied countries are constantly trying to control all flights of the Tu-160 and other Russian bombers.
The Tupolev Tu-160 “Beliy Lebed” is a supersonic, variable-sweep wing, strategic bomber. The Blackjack is the largest and heaviest combat aircraft, the fastest bomber currently in use, and is the largest and heaviest variable-sweep wing airplane ever flown.
The aircraft entered operational service in 1987, and as of 2016, the Russian Air and Space Force (RuASF) fields 16 Tu160s. The Blackjack fleet has been undergoing upgrades to electronics systems since the early 2000s. The first upgraded Tu-160M has been delivered in December 2014.