F L I G H T A R T W O R K S
How to buy
- - - - -
About the artworks
About the artist
- - - - -
Shark attack B&W version
Two Spitfire Mk VIIIs from 457 Squadron of the Royal Australian Air Force bringing down an Imperial Japanese Army Ki-46 "Dinah" reconnaissance aircraft over North Borneo on 20 June 1945, a few days after the Australian seaborne landings there that ended the Japanese occupation.
In the foreground is Spitfire A58-631 coded ZP-V flown by Flt Lt George Scrimgeour with, beyond, A58-620 ZP-M piloted by Flt Lt Gillian Campbell. The aircraft carried the "Grey Nurse" squadron's striking shark's mouth insignia.
The squadron's operations record book recorded: "This is the Squadron's first air combat since 12th November 1943, and has boosted the morale of the Squadron very greatly."
The Australians followed the Japanese aircraft down after having set both its engines on fire, with bits flying off its tail, and saw it explode on impact. I have not been able to pin down which Ki-46 this was, but the Mk III Dinah had an operational range of 4,000km (2,500 miles) so it might have been from the 70th Dokuritsu Dai Shijugo Chutai (70th Independent Flying Regiment) at Kendari Airfield in Sulawesi.
457's Spitfires had been shipped out to the squadron from the UK, arriving in their standard RAF camouflage pattern. The Australians changed the original red, white and blue roundels and fin flashes to their own white and blue, differently-sized versions and patched up the camo with local Foliage Green and Dark Sea Grey. Yellow wing leading edges initially were painted white, but when word came down to drop that, they were overpainted too. The result was a motley finish that varied from aircraft to aircraft.
© Gary Eason email@example.com to license
Imperial Japanese Army
. By using the site you consent to this: