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NEWS | April 21, 2023

Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group Completes Group Sail in Hawaiian Islands Operating Area

By Ensign Valentine Mulango

PACIFIC OCEAN -- The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group (CSG) completed Group Sail in the Hawaiian Islands operating area April 17, in preparation for an upcoming deployment.

Group Sail is an integrated training exercise conducted between units assigned to Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 1. The exercise reintegrated the strike group and provided an opportunity to enhance excellence and increase the lethality and tactical proficiency of U.S. Navy units operating in the 3rd Fleet area of operations.

Led by its flagship, USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), units assigned to CSG-1 engaged in cross-functional training across multiple domains for maximum effectiveness, including enhanced maritime security operations, anti-submarine warfare operations, flight operations, replenishments-at-sea and counter piracy operations, to hone in on maritime integrated-at-sea operations and combat readiness.

"In Group Sail we rehearsed and integrated under the direction of Carrier Strike Group 15. During this underway we achieved some important firsts, and we are setting the course for future strike groups to scale these achievements,” said Rear Adm. Carlos Sardiello, commander, CSG-1.

“I am especially proud that the strike group and carrier air wing achieved Blue Water Certification during this phase of training; an achievement that usually comes later in the readiness cycle. This certification means we can choose to operate in any ocean around the world, today."

The ships and aircraft of the Vinson CSG, made up of more than 5,000 collective Sailors, executed surface and air engagements in a complex maritime environment to demonstrate the strike group’s ability to deliver powerful maritime force in order to respond to coercive behavior from those who seek to challenge the rules-based international order or destabilize the Indo-Pacific.

"We are providing U.S. Pacific Fleet with a ready, resilient, combat-credible force and underscoring to our competitors that today is not the day to test us," said Sardiello.

Integrated maritime engagements and operations are part of the group’s routine presence in the Indo-Pacific. The Vinson CSG last conducted a Group Sail in 2021 in the Southern California operating area.

CSG-1 consists of aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 1, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 2, Ticonderoga-class cruiser USS Princeton (CG 59) and the Henry J. Kaiser-class Fleet replenishment ship USNS Pecos (T-AO 197). Participating DESRON-1 ships included the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers USS Hopper (DDG 70), USS Kidd (DDG 100), USS Sterett (DDG 104), and USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110).

Participating CVW-2 squadrons included the “War Hawks” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 97, the “Bounty Hunters” of VFA-2, the “Stingers” of VFA-113, the “Golden Dragons” of VFA-192, the “Gauntlets” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 136, the “Black Eagles” of Airborne Command and Control Squadron (VAW) 113, the “Titans” of Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron (VRM) 30, the “Black Knights” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 4, and the “Blue Hawks” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 78.

For more news from CSG-1, visit


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