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View Full Version : NEW BOOK - LW over Germany: Defense of the Reich



Blutarski2004
06-28-2007, 09:00 AM
The Luftwaffe over Germany: Defense of the Reich, by Caldwell and Muller -


A very informative and even-handed history of the LW's defense of the airspace over the Reich. Recommended.

P.s. - The book mentions that in July 1944 a pilot by the name of Prentzel (IIRC) defected to England in his 109G-14. Has anyone ever seen any documentation related to Allied performance tests or evaluations of this a/c?

Kurfurst__
06-28-2007, 09:27 AM
I guess they mix up with those two 'Wilde Sau' G-6 nightfighters... same one as the 'gondie G-6/U2' AFDU trials, which are quoted everywhere. He didn't really defect as it seems, but made a navigational error with another pilot.


Air 40/2418 Report A.D.I. (k) No. 371/1944 Landing of two Me 109Gs in error at Manston.

Manston, Kent. 21st July 1944 at 02.45 hrs DBST, aircraft Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6 W.Nr. 163 240, the "Yellow 8" was airborne from St. Dizier at 00.45 hrs. on a "Wilde Sau" mission against Allied night bombers. The Staffelkapitän of 3. / JG 301 is a Hauptmann Sühr. Pilot of W.Nr. 163 240 is Feldwebel Manfred Gromill, of 3. Staffel, Jagdgeschwader Nr. 301.

Manston, Kent. 21st July 1944 at 02.40 hrs DBST, aircraft Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6 W.Nr. 412 951, the "White 16" was airborne from St. Dizier at 00.45 hrs. on a "Wilde Sau" mission against Allied night bombers. The Staffelkapitän of 3. / JG 301 is a Hauptmann Sühr. Pilot of W.Nr. 416 951 is Leutnant Horst Prenzel, Staffelführer of 3. Staffel, Jagdgeschwader Nr. 301.

Blutarski2004
06-28-2007, 10:36 AM
Originally posted by Kurfurst__:
I guess they mix up with those two 'Wilde Sau' G-6 nightfighters... same one as the 'gondie G-6/U2' AFDU trials, which are quoted everywhere. He didn't really defect as it seems, but made a navigational error with another pilot.


Air 40/2418 Report A.D.I. (k) No. 371/1944 Landing of two Me 109Gs in error at Manston.

Manston, Kent. 21st July 1944 at 02.45 hrs DBST, aircraft Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6 W.Nr. 163 240, the "Yellow 8" was airborne from St. Dizier at 00.45 hrs. on a "Wilde Sau" mission against Allied night bombers. The Staffelkapitän of 3. / JG 301 is a Hauptmann Sühr. Pilot of W.Nr. 163 240 is Feldwebel Manfred Gromill, of 3. Staffel, Jagdgeschwader Nr. 301.

Manston, Kent. 21st July 1944 at 02.40 hrs DBST, aircraft Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6 W.Nr. 412 951, the "White 16" was airborne from St. Dizier at 00.45 hrs. on a "Wilde Sau" mission against Allied night bombers. The Staffelkapitän of 3. / JG 301 is a Hauptmann Sühr. Pilot of W.Nr. 416 951 is Leutnant Horst Prenzel, Staffelführer of 3. Staffel, Jagdgeschwader Nr. 301.



..... Thanks for clarifying, K.

luftluuver
06-28-2007, 10:38 AM
Just because the pilot went on a mission does not say that he had not decided to use the mission as a way to defect.

leitmotiv
06-28-2007, 11:48 AM
Right, LL. For decades the fortuitous landings of the Ju 88R and the Ju 88G in the UK during WWII were explained as "navigational errors" and now we know both were got by other means to get a look at state-of-the-art German airborne radar.

thefruitbat
06-28-2007, 01:11 PM
Originally posted by Kurfurst__:
I guess they mix up with those two 'Wilde Sau' G-6 nightfighters... same one as the 'gondie G-6/U2' AFDU trials, which are quoted everywhere. He didn't really defect as it seems, but made a navigational error with another pilot.


Air 40/2418 Report A.D.I. (k) No. 371/1944 Landing of two Me 109Gs in error at Manston.

Manston, Kent. 21st July 1944 at 02.45 hrs DBST, aircraft Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6 W.Nr. 163 240, the "Yellow 8" was airborne from St. Dizier at 00.45 hrs. on a "Wilde Sau" mission against Allied night bombers. The Staffelkapitän of 3. / JG 301 is a Hauptmann Sühr. Pilot of W.Nr. 163 240 is Feldwebel Manfred Gromill, of 3. Staffel, Jagdgeschwader Nr. 301.

Manston, Kent. 21st July 1944 at 02.40 hrs DBST, aircraft Messerschmitt Bf 109G-6 W.Nr. 412 951, the "White 16" was airborne from St. Dizier at 00.45 hrs. on a "Wilde Sau" mission against Allied night bombers. The Staffelkapitän of 3. / JG 301 is a Hauptmann Sühr. Pilot of W.Nr. 416 951 is Leutnant Horst Prenzel, Staffelführer of 3. Staffel, Jagdgeschwader Nr. 301.

I find it almost impossible to belive that they landed there due to a navigational error. Since we can safely assume they saw the runway, which by '44 i think i am correct in saying would be the longest runway in the country (enlarged by the usaf, so a whole squdron of b17 could line up at once i belive), i would guess that they couldnt of helped noticing the sea 1 mile north, 3 miles east, and 2 miles south, all distances ish. oh, and of course land going to the west...

couple that with the fact that it also happens to be the closest base to mainland europe...

if it was an accident, then i think they would struggle to find there way out of a phone box http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

cheers fruitbat

Kurfurst__
06-28-2007, 01:31 PM
The quote is directly from the British intelligence report that was done right after the aircraft landed. It's available on Tony Wood's site.

Frankly I have no idea why would anyone want to cover up for 60 years how the British took possession of two... rotten down G-6s in which the newest thing was... an enlarged tail unit. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Lots of planes mislanded during the war, Faber's plane was just one example. Single engined fighters, navigating on their own in the darkness, frankly I wonder how the heck at all these Wilde Sau pilots found a base to land at all..

thefruitbat
06-28-2007, 01:56 PM
I dont doubt for one second that they did say that, as you say its in black and white, therefore must be true.

Still doesnt mean i belive them http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif But it would of been an execelent way of saving face no? with one eye on the end of the war perhaps...

As for the cover up, you've lost me there?

cheers fruitbat

EmKen
06-28-2007, 03:49 PM
Hmmm... Wilde Sau, usually vectored roughly towards a known target, operating visually using the light of the illuminators or the fires already started.
Operational radius of Bf 109 c. 200km.
Manston c. 200km from nearest German city.
As our American cousins say, "Do the math!"

luftluuver
06-28-2007, 05:20 PM
Originally posted by thefruitbat:
I find it almost impossible to belive that they landed there due to a navigational error. Since we can safely assume they saw the runway, which by '44 i think i am correct in saying would be the longest runway in the country (enlarged by the usaf, so a whole squdron of b17 could line up at once i belive), i would guess that they couldnt of helped noticing the sea 1 mile north, 3 miles east, and 2 miles south, all distances ish. oh, and of course land going to the west...
The longest and widest runway in Southern England was built to allow badly damaged aircraft returning from Europe a safe haven, with the Fido fog dispersal system to allow landings in any weather.

In 1950 the Americans arrived and stayed for eight years.

MB_Avro_UK
06-28-2007, 05:50 PM
Hi all,

I'm slightly confused.

Both LW pilots were from the same JG. They took off together. And they got 'lost' together.

And they landed together at RAF Manston on the south coast of England.

To avoid the British radar they would have to have flown at zero feet.

Bsst Regards,
MB_Avro.

thefruitbat
06-28-2007, 07:01 PM
Originally posted by luftluuver:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by thefruitbat:
I find it almost impossible to belive that they landed there due to a navigational error. Since we can safely assume they saw the runway, which by '44 i think i am correct in saying would be the longest runway in the country (enlarged by the usaf, so a whole squdron of b17 could line up at once i belive), i would guess that they couldnt of helped noticing the sea 1 mile north, 3 miles east, and 2 miles south, all distances ish. oh, and of course land going to the west...
The longest and widest runway in Southern England was built to allow badly damaged aircraft returning from Europe a safe haven, with the Fido fog dispersal system to allow landings in any weather.

In 1950 the Americans arrived and stayed for eight years. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Maybe we're not talking about the same runway, but the runway at manston was definately enlarged by the usaf, even to this day, at the northwest corner of the runway there is something called the loop. These days, its where people do there motocycle tests.

But back in the war, damaged b17's started at the begining of the loop, and by the time they were round, they were ready to fly, i've seen the photos, they are really cool, but they are in the museum (but thats free).

As for the americans staying for eight years, they were still flying planes in and out of there when i was a kid, and i was born in '76. I know, i used to watch them out my window.

cheers fruitbat

luftluuver
06-28-2007, 07:18 PM
Originally posted by thefruitbat:
Maybe we're not talking about the same runway, but the runway at manston was definately enlarged by the usaf, even to this day, at the northwest corner of the runway there is something called the loop. These days, its where people do there motocycle tests.

But back in the war, damaged b17's started at the begining of the loop, and by the time they were round, they were ready to fly, i've seen the photos, they are really cool, but they are in the museum (but thats free).

As for the americans staying for eight years, they were still flying planes in and out of there when i was a kid, and i was born in '76. I know, i used to watch them out my window.

cheers fruitbat Did I say that the Americans did not extend the runway? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

A link to to the Manston museum, http://www.rafmanston.co.uk/history.shtml

Well, Americans use other counties airfields so it is not hard to understand why you would see American a/c.

Can you point out this loop using Google Earth, for I can't see it on the one and only runway.

TX-Gunslinger
06-28-2007, 11:27 PM
One of the most serious charges that we can level on a military figure, on any side, in any conflict - is the that of treason, or desertion. It does not matter who won, or how just the cause - or how much sense it seems to make, after the conflict is over.

This thread interested me so much that I pulled out my copy of "Jagdgeschwader 301/302 "Wild Sau"" by Willi Reschke. This is considered the definitive unit history of these unusual Night/Day Geschwader. Obfw Reschke shot down 27 Allied aircraft in his career, including 11 B-17/9 B-24/3 P-51/2 Yak-9/1 P-47/1 Tempest. He joined JG302 in June 1944, and flew against daylight raids.

It's interesting to note that on the night of 7-8 July, or two weeks prior to his arrival at Mansten, Feldwebel Manfred Gromoll had just scored his first two victories, by downing two Lancaster's in one Wild Sau mission, over France. The night before, on 6 July, Leutnant Prenzel, operating from Dechy (NW of Cambrai) shot down 2 Lancasters also. Like Fw Gromoll, these Lancasters were his first two kills.

Considering the performance of these two pilots over the preceding two weeks, I wouldn't immediately rank them as first in line for the "cross-channel deserters club". Not only did they recover from the shock of their first kill - they went right on in until each got a second in the same mission! To top it off - each destroyed 2 Lancasters with G6's - at night, with no radar.

On the night of the landings at Manston, 1 and 3 Staffel of I. Gruppe/JG 301 were operating out of Northern France, not Germany. At that time the Gruppe was assigned to intercept RAF night bombing raids over France, prior to their entry into Germany.

Leutnant Horst Prenzel was with 1 Staffel, and Feldwebel Grommoll was with 3 Staffel. These guys aren't even in the same flight and they don't normally party together in the Officers Mess.

Another significant observation can be made by comparison of the British interrogation results with the actual assignments of these pilots. British reports cited above represent both pilots are a part of "3./JG301" when in fact only Fw Grommoll was with 3 Staffel. The "Hauptmann Suhr" that both pilots cite to the British - is with the 1st Staffel not the third. Considering the operational practices and organization of I./JG301 it would seem that some effort was made on the part of the pilots, to confuse their interrogators as to the number of Staffeln operating against them over France. It also seems the effort was successful. One Staffel is 10-12 aircraft, Two Staffel means 20-24 enemy aircraft. One of the base tactics in Wild Sau was to have flights organized into Staffel, with each Staffel at a different altitude. So, each of these pilots was a part of a separate flight, operating in the same area.

Oberfeldwebel Reschke writes:

"I/JG 301 flew a night mission in French skies on 21 July. The precise location of the action is not known, however the mission was apparently flown in inclement weather. Leutnant Horst Prenzel of the 1. Staffel became lost and landed his Bf 109 G6 "White 16" (WNr. 412 951) at Manston in England.

Feldwebel Manfred Gromoll of the 3. Staffel suffered the same fate. He too became lost and put his machine down somewhere in England (Bf 109 G6, "Yellow 8", WNr. 163 240)

Both pilots became prisoners of war and were interrogated by the British. The subsequent fate of these two pilots is unknown."

In any event, I thought some of you might be interested in this information too.

S~

font15
06-29-2007, 06:54 AM
Didnt we first get our hands on a FW190a in '42 after the pilot shot down a spitfire over Exeter in s.w. england, misread his compass, mistook the Bristol channel for The Channel and landed at sleepy old Pembrey in south wales?
I seem to recall reading he was the squadron adjutant, did a victory roll over the field, put his wheels down whilst inverted for a very flash landing and taxied to dispersal to be told to put his hands up! Wasn't he whisked off to Canada pretty sharpish to keep him shtum whilst we admired his new toy?
This all in broad daylight.
It happens. About 10 years ago a very senior British Airways pilot got the sack for trying to land his jumbo on the dual carriageway alongside Heathrow.