Hobby Master HA1328 USAF Fairchild Republic A-10A Thunderbolt II Ground Attack Aircraft - 66th Weapons Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, April 2005 (1:72 Scale)
"Obsolete weapons do not deter."
- British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
The A-10 and OA-10 Thunderbolt IIs are the first Air Force aircraft designed specifically for close air support of ground forces. They are simple, effective, and highly survivable twin-engine jet aircraft that can be used against all ground targets, especially tanks and other armored vehicles. The first production A-10A was delivered to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, AZ., in October 1975.
The aircraft can carry a wide variety of ordnance under its wings and nose, loiter on-station for long periods of time, and fly over a wide combat radius, making it an ideal warrior on today's battlefield. In the Gulf War, A-10s, with a mission capable rate of 95.7 percent, flew 8,100 sorties and launched 90 percent of the AGM-65 Maverick missiles used in-country.
This particular 1:72 scale replica of a USAF Fairchild Republic A-10A Thunderbolt II ground attack aircraft that was attached to the 66th Weapons Squadron, then deployed to Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, during April 2005.
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Release Date: May 2020
Historical Account: "Hawgsmoke" - Hawgsmoke is a biennial United States Air Force bombing, missile, and tactical gunnery competition for A-10 Thunderbolt II units. It is hosted by the winners of the previous competition and provides both skills competition and an opportunity to share in the camaraderie and fellowship within the A-10 community.
Hawgsmoke grew out of the discontinued "Gunsmoke" Air Force Worldwide Gunnery Competition. Gunsmoke had been the US Air Force's air-to-ground gunnery and bombing competition involving multiple air frames, first held in 1949 and then biennially (except for 1963-1980) from 1954 to 1995 at Nellis Air Force Base.
Colonel Cliff Latta of the 172nd Fighter Squadron is credited with initiating the first Hawgsmoke competition at the Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center, Michigan and was hosted by the Michigan Air National Guard's 172nd Fighter Squadron from Battle Creek. A-10 units from around the world sent four aircraft and associated crew to compete in ground attack and target destruction events. The 118th Fighter Squadron from the Connecticut Air National Guard won the first event and in turn hosted Hawgsmoke 2002, at Fort Drum, New York.
In 2002, 17 teams and 62 aircraft competed. The overall winner was the four-member team from the 47th Fighter Squadron from Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana. Hawgsmoke 2002 emphasized target acquisition and focused on accurately dropping practice bombs, firing the AGM-65 Maverick missile, and strafing proficiency with the 30 mm GAU-8 Gatling gun.
Hawgsmoke 2004 was hosted by the 47th Fighter Squadron and held at England Air Park, Louisiana. The competition grew to include 18 teams and more than 70 aircraft. Weather conditions forced the cancellation of the competition events and consequently the event became known as "Hawgwash" 2004.
As there was no winner in 2004, the 355th Fighter Wing was selected to host the 2006 event. It was held from March 22nd-25th at Davis Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona. Hawgsmoke 2006 coincided with the 30th Anniversary of the A-10; consequently, over 140 aircraft flew in to take part. The 303rd Fighter Squadron from Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, emerged the winner. In turn, the 303rd hosted Hawgsmoke 2008 at Smoky Hill Range, Kansas.