In the early 1970’s the US Army wanted a replacement for the AH-1 Cobra so companies submitted proposals. In July 1973 the list was shortened to Hughes and Bell with each building a prototype in 1975. The Army selected the Hughes helicopter because its landing gear was more stable and the main rotor was more damage tolerant. In 1981 3 pre-production AH-64As were given to the Army for testing and named Apache. The Apache went into production in 1982 and has evolved into one of the deadly machines over the battle field.
On June 6, 1997 the AH-64A was officially added to the RNAF. The demonstration team was formed in 2002 but from 2005 – 2009 the team had been halted because of operational duties but in 2010 the solo-team was reformed. In 2010 the Royal Netherlands Air Force’s AH-64D Apache Longbow Solo Display Team is serial Q-19 c/n DN019. The Apache Solo Display Team pilot and helicopter are from the 301st Apache Squadron “Redskins” based at Gilze-Rijen AB. The nickname “Redskins” is derived from the old 314th Squadron “Humphrey the Indian”.