Grand Champion WWII – Sun-n-Fun 2004
Best Fighter – Oshkosh 2004
This was yet another joint project between Pioneer Aero Restorations and Avspecs.
Originally manufactured in Buffalo, New York during 1941, this Curtiss P-40E was assigned to the United States Army Air Corps. Through the military, it was provided to Russia under the Lend-Lease program. It was most likely shipped to Persia, modern day Iran, and ferried to the front lines of Eastern Europe.
Manufacturer: Curtiss-Wright Company, Buffalo, New York
Year of Manufacture: 1941
US Army Air Corps Number: 41-35927
This particular aircraft was assigned to a Soviet squadron in the Murmansk region of Northern Russia in the defense of the homeland from the German Nazi invasion. The aircraft was lost in action near the Arctic Circle, where it lay on the frozen tundra for over fifty years. While abandoned, it was often vandalized and cut apart for scrap metal, wires, and anything useable by the local inhabitants of this remote area.
In 1992, the airplane was recovered and brought to the United States by way of Switzerland. It was acquired by Jerry Yagen of The Fighter Factory for restoration to return it to its original flying condition.
The aircraft was shipped to us with the fuselage completed, wing tip components and other items rebuilt. Our task was to modify this to a two-seater, as per Tony Banta’s P-40E and the Darby-Hogan P-40N1.
After completion the aircraft debuted at the Classic Fighters airshow at Omaka, NZ in Easter 2003 and has now returned to Jerry’s collection based in, Virginia, USA.