Corgi Aviation Archive Series Diecast Model
Sopwith Camel F.1 Wilfred Reid 'Wop' May (Canadian), No. 209 Squadron, RAF, April 21, 1918, Death of the Red Baron
1:48 Scale. Length: 4.75. Wingspan: 7"
Limited Edition of 2,000 Models Worldwide
As he climbed into the cockpit of his Sopwith Camel fighter at Bertangles Aerodrome on April 21 1918, Canadian Wilfred Reid 'Wop' May had no idea that this would be the most significant day in his life. Embarking on only his second mission over the Western Front, Wilfred May had been instructed by his Commander, Ace pilot Capt. Roy Brown, to avoid combat if they encountered the enemy, simply to gain height and make for home. Over the River Somme, No. 209 Squadron encountered several Fokker Dr.1s of Manfred von Richthofen's Flying Circus and dived to attack as instructed, May stayed at an altitude, but when an enemy Triplane passed close by he saw the chance of an easy victory. Misjudging his attack, he overshot the enemy aircraft and by the time he regained his bearings, Mays Camel began taking bullet strikes on its wings the novice hunter had become the hunted. His opponent was clearly an experienced fighter pilot and May could not shake him from his tail - his only chance of survival was to dive and try to make it over Allied lines, hoping his enemy would not follow.Die-cast metal fuselage
Detailed cockpit with pilot figure
Historically accurate printed markings
Rotatable propeller with wood grain effect
Detailed wing rigging
Numbered collector card
Box with Sopwith Camel artwork
What he did not know was that he was being chased by the distinctive red Fokker Triplane of Manfred von Richthofen, the greatest air ace the world had ever known. May was now in a fight for his life, as he struggled to avoid becoming the 81st aerial victory of von Richthofen. With his guns jammed and unable to shake the ace off his tail, May flew at tree-top height, almost hitting the steeple of Vaux-sur-Somme church, as he attempted to reach the potential safety of Allied lines. Displaying exceptional airmanship, his pursuer stayed on his tail, however, despite firing off the odd round, appeared to be having gun problems of his own.
The chase had attracted the attention of Captain Roy Brown, who attacked the Triplane, but due to speed and low altitude of the chase, was only able to fire a few bursts of deflection shot. Just as it seemed as if May would either hit the ground or appear large in the Triplane's gunsight, the German aircraft reared up and immediately attempted to make a forced landing in a nearby field ripping the undercarriage off on the rough ground. Mortally wounded, von Richthofen shut down the engine of his machine and cut off the fuel, before dying at the aircraft controls, the result of a single bullet wound. This historic victory was initially attributed (although not claimed) to Captain Roy Brown, however subsequent research revealed that the fatal shot to von Richthofen's chest was most likely fired from an Australian machine gun position on the Morlancourt Ridge.
The highly maneuverable Sopwith Camel was without doubt one of the most successful ﬁghter aircraft of the First World War and accounted for more enemy aircraft destroyed than any other British type. Named Camel as a result of the hump shaped fairing that housed the two 0.303 in Vickers machine guns this supreme ﬁghter aircraft was a real handful to operate effectively, with the torque from its powerful rotary engine constantly trying to ﬂip the Camel into a potentially life threatening spin. If tamed, the Camel was the ﬁnest ﬁghting aircraft produced and was superior to all contemporary German ﬁghters. During the 17 months of its operational service at the end of WWI, Sopwith Camel pilots would claim an average of 76 aerial victories each month helping the Allied air forces wrestle air supremacy from the Luftstreitkrafte.
Corgi is a manufacturer of high quality, pre-built, die-cast display models. Every model is crafted with meticulous attention to detail, using the specifications of the original aircraft or vehicle. This model is made with diecast metal and some plastic components.
This model of a Sopwith Camel F.1 features:
Category: Corgi Biplane and Triplane Aircraft Models
Not suitable for children under the age of 14 years