The Grumman F8F Bearcat "Wampus Cat", the Spitfire Mark LF IXe and the B-25D Mitchell "Grumpy" in formation at the 2013 Comox Airshow.
Grumman F8F Bearcat "Wampus Cat"
“Biggest engine, least airframe” was the Grumman Aircraft Corporation’s motto for the F8F Bearcat. The plane serves as an example of evolving innovation— the hallmark of great aircraft companies. All the Grumman “cats” were built in response to the need for fighters that could stalk their prey by night. With the F8F, Grumman delivered an aircraft that was lighter and more maneuverable than the Hellcat and managed Naval carrier takeoffs and landings that the twin-engine Tigercat couldn’t handle. The Bearcat flew circles around the North American P-51 Mustangs, the Supermarine Spitfire, and even early model jets. That’s one reason the Wampus Cat saw most of its work in serious play—literally flying circles around pylons in the famed Reno Air Races and other races and demonstrations.
Spitfire Mark LF IXe
The LF Mark IXe is a pilot’s dream to fly, a lethal fighter, and a delight to watch. It can take off and land on an airstrip or a patch of cornfield. It flew in turn for dogfights, escort missions, aerial performances, front-line defense, and combat training.
B-25D Mitchell "Grumpy"
One of 70 B-25Ds included in a 1944 lend-lease transaction, “Grumpy” also served the RAF. Post-war, the hardy aircraft flew as part of Northwest Air Command responsible for the defense of Western Canada. Early in 1962, “Grumpy” was struck off charge and sold by the Crown Assets Disposal Corporation to Joe Goldney of Vancouver, BC.
More Photos from 2013 Comox Airshow
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