Dragon DRW50101 Limited Edition German Focke-Wulf Fw 190A-5 Fighter - Hermann Graf, Erganzungsjagdgruppe Ost, France, 1943 (1:72 Scale)
"Guns before butter. Guns will make us powerful; butter will only make us fat."
- Reichsmarschall Hermann Goering, Head of the German Luftwaffe
Nicknamed the "Butcher Bird," the FW-190 was Germany's best air-to-ground fighter. Faster and more agile than the British Spitfire, it dominated the skies over Europe as a fighter and was the Luftwaffe's most important ground-attack aircraft. Controlled by the skilled hands of aces like Oberleutnant Otto Kittel, the FW-190 gained the reputation of being one of the greatest fighters of all time. This fighter-bomber and anti-tank aircraft was almost impossible to defeat until the introduction of the long-range P-51 Mustang.
The Fw 190A-8 entered production in February 1944 and was produced in greater numbers than any other Fw 190 sub-type. This variant featured the heavier armament of the MG 151/20s in the outer wings and the MG 131s in the cowl, those changes introduced in the A-6 and A-7 models. The ever increasing weights took a toll on the performance and handling of the 190. While its heavy firepower made it more effective against bombers, the increased weight made it harder to defend itself against the roving escort fighters.
This particular 1:72 scale limited edition fighter was flown by legendary ace Hermann Graf during his tenure on the western front in March 1943. Comes with a display stand. Only 500 pieces produced. Sold Out!
Wingspan: 5 inches
Length: 5 inches
Release Date: January 2005
Historical Account: "Diamonds are Forever" - Hermann Graf was the first pilot to score 200 confirmed victories, which was achieved in the remarkable span of just thirteen months. He flew 830 combat missions over the course of his flying career, and he received the coveted Knights Cross on January 24th, 1942 after his 41st victory. The Oak Leaves to his Knights Cross was awarded on May 17th, 1942 after his 104th victory, and just two days later he was awarded the Swords to his Knights Cross. On September 16th, 1942, after tallying his 172nd victory, he was awarded the Diamonds to his Knights Cross. He is only one of nine Luftwaffe pilots to have been awarded the Diamonds.
After he was awarded the Diamonds, Reichsmarschall Goring banned him from flying further combat missions and, in January 1943, he was dispatched to France to train and lead Erganzungsjagdgruppe Ost (Fighter Replacement Group East). This was an advanced training unit for new pilots and a refresher school for older pilots who were no longer fighting after sustaining injuries in combat. Despite the need to keep veteran pilots out of harm's way, the Reich was in dire straits as it continued to need leaders of his calibre at the front. Eventually, he was assigned to lead JG11 based in Rotenburg, Germany to help deal with the American bomber fleets. As it turned out, Graf was the only wearer of the Diamonds to fly in the Defense of the Reich during the war.