first published on May 5, 2018 by Sean
A WWII vintage Grumman Hellcat soars over Beale Air & Space Expo this past April, at Beale Air Force Base in California. Tail mounted HD GoPro captures the gnarly and unique flight-perspective.
Video courtesy of Staff Sgt. Ramon Adelan and the 9th Reconnaissance Wing
Unique footage from the Beale Air & Space Expo this past April, occurring at Beale Air Force Base in northern California.
The venerable Grumman Hellcat was an American carrier-based fighter aircraft during World War II. Designed and improved upon during the war to counter the infamous Japanese Zero, it became the United States Navy’s dominant fighter in the second half of the Pacific War.
Powered by a 2,000hp Pratt & Whitney engine and armed with six .50 Cal Browning machine guns – it additionally featured an armored cockpit.
According to the Naval Aviation Museum, “Adhering to Grumman’s design philosophy to produce an aircraft in which a pilot could become proficient in a short period of time, and that was easy to operate from a carrier yet could outperform the enemy, the Hellcat was loved by its pilots. Hellcat pilots achieved an amazing 19:1 kill ratio, downing 5,156 enemy aircraft in just two years, accounting for 75 percent of the Navy’s aerial victories during the war.”
This impressive aerial combat record of the Hellcat helped solidified its place in American aviation history.