The Lavochkin La-5 and Il-2 Sturmovik squadrons, and Ivan Kozhedub are about to arrive on the Eastern front for Blood Red Skies!
- Scale: 1/200th
- 7 Aircraft
The 240 IAP (Fighter Aviation Regiment) was one of the foremost Soviet fighter units. Initially equipped with obsolete I-16 fighters, they fought a one-sided battle against the Luftwaffe through the opening months of Operation Barbarossa, before being withdrawn to re-equip with LaGG3s.
During 1943 the Regiment was again re-equipped, this time with the excellent La5 series of fighters. With their new mounts, they started to carve out a reputation as a first-class fighter unit. In recognition of their combat record, they received the “Guards” title in July 1944, becoming the 178th GIAP (Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment). They would finish the war flying the superb La7.
Their ranks included a number of famous Aces, including the highest scoring Allied fighter pilot of World War II, Ivan Kozhedub.
Il-2 Sturmovik squadron – $32.00
- Scale: 1/200th
- 6 Aircraft
- Requires Assembly
Initially a single seater, the Il-2 proved to be a deadly air-to-ground weapon. This variant was to see heavy losses due to its vulnerability to fighter attack. Consequently, by September 1942, a two-seat design with a rear gunner under a stretched canopy entered service.
In the desperate months early in the war, the Sturmovik was pressed into a fighter role. Outclassed by dedicated enemy fighters in dogfights, the Il-2 could successfully take on other Luftwaffe aircraft. The German 7.92 mm machine guns were ineffective against the heavily armoured Sturmoviks, close formations of Junkers Ju 87 Stukas, Junkers Ju 52, Heinkel He 111 and Focke-Wulf Fw 200 Condor bombers would be favoured targets.
Sturmovik pilots employed a brave defensive tactic, they would fly fast and low. This meant that the majority of ground fire would miss or ricochet from the armoured tub. If an enemy fighter closed in, they would slow down, letting the fighter overshoot and fly into the Il-2’s firing range.