TWO pilots who died when their light aircraft crashed to the ground in North Yorkshire on Saturday have been named as trainee RAF pilots.
Police tonight revealed the tragic students were Cameron James Forster, 21, from Sussex, and Ajvir Singh Sandhu, 25, from Essex.
North Yorkshire Police identified the pair two days after they crashed into a remote field in Ryedale, near Castle Howard, in a tragedy that is being probed by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch.
This evening, RAF Linton-on-Ouse station commander Ian Laing paid tribute to the "exceptionally talented" men.
He said: "They were both exceptionally talented young men in the prime of their lives.
"The thoughts of everyone at RAF Linton-on-Ouse are with their family and friends at this difficult time".
Members of a local aircraft spotters group also offered their condolences.
One said: "May your families and loved ones find comfort in the knowledge that you are no longer in pain and the Good Lord will watch over you guarding and guiding you in these sad times.
"Deepest condolences and heartfelt sympathies to those left behind."
Another added: "Sad news, seen the photos and can only hope it was instant for them. RIP sad loss for the local area."
A photo on Mr Sandhu's Facebook page shows the young pilot performing an aerial stunt in a small aircraft.
His profile also includes a photo album entitled 'Flying' with pictures of various aircraft.
Speaking at the scene on Saturday, Superintendent Mark Grange, of North Yorkshire Police, said the plane landed more than 200m away from the nearest houses and looked like it had come "straight down".
He said: "It looks like an aircraft, with two wings and a tail fin where it should be. It's in a bad way and it's obviously come down heavily. It's sat on its underside so it has not flipped.
"Whether they tried to land like that I don't know.
"I cannot say where they were going and what they were doing in the air."