High over the snow-capped Alps on the 18th July 1944, a large formation of B-17Gs from the 483rd Bomb Group, 15th Air force, made their way from their base in Italy over the beautiful but hostile terrain of the mountains en route to their target in South Eastern Germany. Out of the crystal blue sky they were suddenly intercepted by a determined force of Fw190A-8/R2 ‘Sturmbocke’ of IV.(Sturm)/JG3 ‘Udet’. Despite the best efforts of the American escort fighters no fewer than fourteen of the B17s were shot down in a devastating attack that lasted just fifteen minutes. The ‘Sturm’ concept was a direct response to the Luftwaffe's difficulty in shooting down the tough and well armed US Heavy Bombers, especially the B-17. The fighter chosen to carry out the new tactic was a special version of the Fw190A-8. It carried additional armour to deflect the heavy machine gun fire from the bombers and was also given the extra attacking power of two of the much-feared Mk108 30mm cannons with high explosive shells. The ideal 'Sturm' attack was delivered from behind, closing in to virtually point-blank range. It required nerves of steel from the pilots. IV.(Sturm)/JG3 'Udet' was the Luftwaffe's premier 'Sturm' Unit and served throughout the 'Defence of the Reich' period and the Ardennes Offensive. A number of the unit’s pilots won the Knight’s Cross whilst serving in the 'Sturm' role, including Oscar Romm, Hans Weik and the man who led the Unit on 18th July 1944, Hauptmann Wilhelm Moritz. By war’s end, IV.(Sturm)/JG3 ‘Udet’ had amassed over 500 Victories.
THE JG3 'UDET' EDITION
Signed by the artist Nicolas Trudgian and Two outstanding Luftwaffe Knights Cross Holders Fw 190A-8/R2 Aces,
Erich Rudorffer Knights Cross Oakleaves and Swords and Hugo Broch Knights Cross
£120 + postage and packing
THE STURMBOCKE EDITION
Signed by the artist Nicolas Trudgian and Nine outstanding Luftwaffe Knights Cross Holder Fighter Aces,
Hans-Ekkehard Bob Knights Cross, Hugo Broch Knights Cross,
Adolf Dickfeld Knights Cross with Oakleaves, Hermann Neuhoff Knights Cross,
Günther Rall Knights Cross with Oakleaves and Swords, Edmund Rossmann Knights Cross,
Erich Rudorffer Knights Cross with Oakleaves and Swords, Günter Seeger Knights Cross and Otto Schultz Knights Cross.
Most of these signatures on this print were collected during the 1980's and early 1990's and therefore are extremely rare and unrepeatable.