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AGA101047 - Fighter Sweep
(by Art G)

(The copyright signature will not appear on the final printed product)
This print is available

 

This print is available (UK only) in the following sizes:

36" x 18" Canvas (no border) - £79.99
24" x 12" Canvas (no border) - £59.99
20" x 10" Canvas (no border) - £44.99

*All canvases come with a 20mm frame and reversed edge as standard.
 
36" x 18" Fine Art Print (2" border) - £59.99
24" x 12" Fine Art Print (1.5" border) - £42.99
20" x 10" Fine Art Print (1" border) - £29.99

OR with 5mm border:

36" x 18" Fine Art Print (5mm border) - £59.99
24" x 12" Fine Art Print (5mm border) - £42.99
20" x 10" Fine Art Print (5mm border) - £29.99

(Fine Art Print Options - Satin or Matt finish)

(free P&P in UK)

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Another of my favourites from Dunsfold Wings & Wheels Airshow 2014, 'Fighter Sweep' shows the  Spitfire and P51 Mustang of the Old Flying Machine Company. Both are magnificent aircraft and there is often debate over which one was the better WW2 Fighter... Fortunately this question was answered when the Mustang arrived on the scene during the Italian Campaign - I'll let Col. Charles McCorkle (commander of 31st Fighter Group) explain further...

"With late winter came Anzio, plenty of action, and a flurry of victories, along with orders to move to the Fifteenth Air Force and be re-equipped with P-51s. The P-51B already had been introduced into England in the Eighth Air Force, where it was serving as escort fighter. This was to be the role of the 31st in the Fifteenth Air Force. The first two P-51s soon were reported available at Oran in Algiers and were ferried to Italy where the 31st was still located at Castel Volturno, on the beach north of Naples, with one squadron on the Anzio beachhead at Nettuno.

Now we could see which was the better aircraft. Needless to say, the subject had received plenty of attention since the conversion had been announced. During a year-and-a-half of Spit operations both the pilots and the ground crewmen had become extremely partial to the Spitfire. Now came this new bird with great recommendations, but the 31st had believed and proved that the Spit could lick anything it encountered. Although a few weeks of flying a new aircraft nearly always makes it popular, here was a case where a test had to come first. After several pilots had become familiar with it, a Mustang and a Spit took off for scheduled "combat," flown by two top young flight commanders. Their approximate takeoff statistics were: Spit IX"”horsepower 1,650, wing area 242, weight (optional) 7,300, wing loading 30; P-51B"”horsepower 1,650, wing area 233, weight (optional) 10,000 (near), wing loading 43.

When the fighters returned, the pilots had to agree that the Spitfire had won the joust. The Spit could easily outclimb, outaccelerate, and outmanouvre its opponent; the P-51 could outdive and outrun the Spit. That sounds like faint praise for the P-51, but we must remember that our opponents were not Spits but Me-109s and that the P-51's climb and maneuverability actually were quite good; nearly as good as the Spit's. More important, the fuel capacity of the P-51 was so superior to the Spit's that an entirely different dimension was added to the combat capability comparison range. Range didn't come into play in this particular encounter, though its integration in the P-51 made the aircraft relatively heavy compared with the Spitfire, which thus had better maneuverability and climb. However, it could and did assure the emergence of the P-51 as the best of a new breed, the direly needed long-range escort fighter."

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