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Warbirds over Wanaka 1996
Wanaka 1996 was a classic year! We were incredibly lucky to see a Messerschmitt
Me-109 G10, birdcage Corsair, Yak-3, TBM Avenger, Spitfire XVI, T-28 Trojan, Zero Replica (Harvard), P-51D, etc etc.
  Messerschmitt Me-109 G10

Top of my must see lists was Han's Dittes (from memory!) Me-109 G10 replica, based on an Hispano Ha-1112. A very beautiful aeroplane, after I saw this I understood why some people have a passion for the '109. Quite a distinctive and wonderful sound too!

 

  It is very interesting to see how the flap and the radiator arrangement on the late model 109's worked - the inboard flap splits open to allow air flow through the radiator - very cool! (haha)

 

 

109 scramble! This was during the airfield attack at the end of the show. Wish I could hear it now... click to see a larger version.
 

The Bf109-G10 did a very good display, here it is with wing tip vortices apparent as it pulls up hard from an airfield pass.



 

 

There were quite a few good photo opportunities from the sideline to get aircraft taking off against the backdrop of explosions, all good stuff! I never seemed to have this opportunity in later years. At the time my camera gear was a Ricoh KR-10 Super and (I think) a Tamron 70-210 zoom.

 

  Spitfire XVI and P-40K scramble! Allison and Packhard Merlin in unison.

 

 
The Roaring 40's Harvard aerobatic team (in later years re-named the Roaring 50's to better reflect the pilot's ages! Honest!) does an excellent job, and always plays the baddies. Shown here with flaps full down, Harvard NZ1078 completes its landing roll.
  The aircraft then engage in a massive fly around, shooting each other down and generally having a ball.   The Spitfire XVI was, I believe, flown by Ray Hanna.  It was very low and very fast.  It was actually still descending slightly at this point!

 

 
This is one of the better aeroplane photos that I had taken up to that time.  IIRC, it took off from the grass strip closer to the crowd line.  Sounded great, look even better!  Click on the image to view a larger copy (800 x 600 pixels, around 67K) 
 

 

I didn't get any good shots of the beautiful Allison powered Yak 3 "late model" flying in 1996, so here is the next best thing. This amazingly manouverable fighter really smoked my tyres, it was so good to see it and the Messerschmitt in formation.



Yak 3

 
Mr DeHavilland's gorgeous Rapide, in New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NAC) colours.
 

Don't forget to stop and smell the Avgas, as the wise old saying goes.  This rarity is a Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusa (Oscar).  It has been restored to "taxi-ing" condition, but strangely a few feet of air appeared under the wheels during a high speed taxi run.  A very valuable aircraft.  This is at the aircraft park near the entrance to the airfield.


Nakajima Ki-43 Hyabusa (Oscar)

 

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  (c) Copyright Brian Greenwood 2013