"Gold Section was sent up to patrol above a convoy. Forty minutes in they were vectored to intercept approaching Stukas but before they could reach them they were bounced by two ME 109s. First anybody new of them was when the cannon shells started…"
This encounter is based on an engagement between 501 Squadron, flying Hurricanes, and some ME 109s. 501 were patrolling above a convoy off Dorset on the morning of 12th July when radar spotted inbound bombers which turned out to be Ju 87s. The Hurricanes turned to face them but before they could engage were jumped by enemy fighters.
The set up was simple, Gold Section led by Dermot Reed was flying in vic formation and two ME 109s were deployed behind them. I didn't have much hope for 327s performance given the results of the previous two sorties and none of these games were going to be particularly fair.
|Starting positions on new sea mat!|
|Buckley gets lucky|
The Hurricanes broke, Buckley and Reed climbing to get to neutral and Blaiden who started advantaged burning some of that so he could perform a 180 and face the enemy.
|Positions and the end of round 1|
Round 2 - the Germans continued to close but didn't have advantage so couldn't shoot. The other two Hurricanes burn advantage to face the enemy. No shooting occurred.
In the next round one 109 made a head on attack on Reed resulting in a saved hit but in this game that's still a boom chit.
|The first head on attack fails|
The second 109 also made a head on attack on Reed and hit him. This time Reed failed his save and became disadvantaged.
Blaiden was next to move burning advantage to get on the tail of a 109; he fired but missed.
|Blaiden gets in behind a 109|
Buckley moved and tried to outmaneuver one of the enemy but failed.
The turn ended with the RAF having 2 boom chits and the Luftwaffe none.
Next turn started with a ME 109 getting behind Reed who was still disadvantaged. Fortunately for Reed and the RAF the German pilot missed.
Blaiden was still on the tail of the other enemy fighter and this time he hit! The German failed to save and, as he was already disadvantaged, was shot down. 327 had their first kill!
|327's first victory!|
They also had their first victory, the Luftwaffe now had two boom chits and only one active plane, so the game concluded at the end of that turn with no further shooting occurring.
501 didn't fair so well in reality. A Hurricane and pilot were lost. The Stukas were intercepted by six Spitfires of 609 Squadron but they in turn were hit by a large escort.
"F-H was delighted that 327 had opened its score. As soon as we were stood down the lot of us decamped to a pub a couple of miles from the airfield. We were on our second or third pint of something peculiar when Collins turned up, hardly a scratch on him after his escapades yesterday. His re-appearance boosted the sense of celebration. I think F-H was pleased to see him, though you wouldn't know it from the greeting, 'Where the hell have you been?' he bellowed followed rapidly by, 'And where's your bloody kite?'"