Focke Wulf Fw 190 A-2

Flown by Hauptmann Joachim Müncheberg, Stab II./JG 26, Abbeville-Drucat/France, April 29, 1942


Supermarine Spitfire MK Vb

Flown by Wing Commander Marian Pisarek, No 1. Polish Wing, Northolt/England, April 29, 1942

Air Vice-Marshal Leight-Mallory, the commander of the 11. Group wrote to his Squadrons in April 1942; "The Germans appear to be less keen to engage our formations, I feel we are gradually getting the better of them, Stick to it and lose no opportunity to seek out and destroy them".

However Leight-Mallory must have known writing this letter, by reading the Ultra decrypts, that the enemy could just muster around 200 fighters and that for every german fighter shot down, RAF Fighter Command lost three of their own.

One of the reason for the heavy RAF losses and rather one sided battles over the channel and northern France was the Focke Wulf Fw 190, the fighter that by now equipped the two opposing fighter units, JG 2 and JG 26. Oddly enough, as late as April 1942 Fighter Command apparently still failed to realize or simply choose to ignore the general superiority of the Fw 190 over the Spitfire V.

On Wednesday, 29 April 1942 in mid afternoon Fighter Command sent six Boston bombers of Circus No. 145 to bomb Dunkirk. The bombers was escorted by masses of Spitfires from Leight-Mallorys No. 11 Group, trying to draw the Jagdwaffe into a fight, in what was dubbed by the British as the "Non Stop Offensive" and by the German defenders as the "Nonsens Offensive".

Hauptmann "Pips" Priller of III./JG 26 reported intercepting "150 Spitfires" in the Le Touquert-Dunkirk area. And II./JG 26 led by Hptm. Joachim Müncheberg attacked the Northolt Wing over Le Treport. Müncheberg and his Stabsschwarm and the 4th Staffel Schwarm manage to dove trough the top cover squadron and attacked the lead Spitfires below.

With two short bursts of canon fire Müncheberg manage to hit the Spitfire flown by WgCdr Marian Pisarek. Pisarek, with his aircraft in flames manage to free himself from the cockpit and bail out, unfortunately to low for his parachute to deploy fully. The newly appointed Wing Commander of the Northolt Wing, and one of the leading Polish fighter aces at this time with 12 confirmed kills, was KIA.

This was to be Joachim Münchebergs 74th Abschuss, and his ninth Spitfire V shot down during the month, one more would follow the next day.

Please note that there is no photos of Pisarek's Spitifire, this profile is therefor based on other Spitfires from his unit during this period.

© Claes Sundin 2015