Boris Johnson’s newly Union Jack daubed warplane was scrambled today along with a team of UK fighter jets to warn off another Russian air-force formation.
The refuelling and transport plane – also used by the PM and the royals – was recently re-designed at a staggering cost of £900,000 so it can advertise the UK on global travels.
And yesterday it went on its first major operation as a Quick Response Action scramble from RAF Lossiemouth screamed towards Russian warplanes heading towards UK airspace.
The Ministry of Defence said no interception was required during the operation and the Voyager made a return to its base at RAF Brize Norton, in Oxfordshire.
It had been sent up to Scotland on the emergency mission to support British Typhoon fighter bombers as they patrolled an area north of the Scottish coast.
It was there to help with refuelling if the Typhoon air aces were ordered to stay in the air for a long period but returned to base.
The attempted Russian approach was by a team of Moscow’s long-range “Blackjack” bombers, which are used as spy planes, to test UK responses to air incursion.
The UK aircraft, known as Vespina and also often referred to as ‘ZZ336’ which is its military registration number, was previously visually indistinguishable from the rest of the Operational Voyager Fleet.
This external paint scheme will better reflect its VIP missions and contribution to ‘Global Britain’, the MoD said