The Hungarian Air Defence units usually take part in the complex live shooting exercise over Soviet Ashuluk missile range. In 1985 the units of the Hungarian 1st Air Defence Corps were prepared for the exercises.
The Hungarian Home Air Defence 11th Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade and the 105th Anti-Aircraft Missile Regiment traveled to Ashuluk training center. Meanwhile the crew of the 31st and 59th Home Fighter Air Regiments traveled to Privolzhskiy, Astrakhan airport to the 'STRELBA-85' exercise in August 1985. The anti-aircraft missile units used their own and rented SA-75 Volhov ‘SA–2 Guideline’ and S-125 Neva ‘SA-3 Goa’ air defence systems. The Soviet 116th Air Defense Training Center gave to the Hungarian fighter force more MiG-21PFM ‘Fishbed-F’, MiG-21MF ‘Fishbed-J’, and MiG-21bis ‘Fishbed-L’ fighters. The 18th Anti-Aircraft Missile regiment of the Hungarian Army joined them with 2K12 Kub ‘SA-6 Gainful’ mobile surface-to-air missile system.
The 'STRELBA-85' exercise had difficulty at the beginning. The Soviet weapons were in bad condition. Moreover, there was a rainstorm before the exercise, which was very unusual in the desert. The Soviet weapons leaked in the desert.
They were shooting down low flying La-17K and high speed RM-207M airborne targets. The reconnaissance and the tracking of the target were made effortful by several land base electronic countermeasures systems.
Fun fact that the shooting range had no alcohol, due to Gorbachev's anti-alcohol campaign. At the end of the exercise, they clinked glasses with water, which was not common by Russians before!
The Hungarian 31st and 59th Home Fighter Air Regiments flown with 116th centers’s MiG-21PFM/MF/bis and UM fighters at Privolzhskiy, Astrakhan airport in 1985: