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RNZAF Curtiss P-40M
Decal Preview

Ventura Publications, 1/48 scale

P r e v i e w



Ventura Publications has sent the following information and images on their newest decal release for two RNZAF P-40Ms, available now from Ventura Publication in 1/48 scale:

Flying Officer Geoff Fisken P-40M "Wairarapa Wildcat" NZ3072

NZ3072 was delivered by ship to Auckland New Zealand and assembled at Hobsonville in March 1943. It suffered minor damage in New Caledonia on the ferry flight north to the Pacific war zone and was repaired by the local U.S.Army Air Service Command unit.



Before handing the aircraft back to the New Zealanders, they painted their unit emblem of a black tomcat on the cowlings. NZ3072 was then allocated to Flying officer Geoff Fisken as his aircraft.

It was decided to leave the cat marking on and, as many in the Squadron came from the Wairarapa province of New Zealand, a white ‘Wairarapa Wildcat’ name was added.

Six Japanese flags denoting Fisken’s victories in the defence of Malaya were added and he accumulated a further five victories with No.14 Squadron during their first tour.


Squadron Leader Michael J Herrick P-40M NZ3078

Squadron Leader Michael J Herrick served in the RAF as a night fighter pilot during the Battle of Britain where he was credited with four victories, plus one damaged.



In October 1941, Herrick was seconded to the RNZAF initially as an instructor in New Zealand.

He was posted to No.15 Squadron flying P-40 Kittyhawks, first in Tonga then Espiritu Santo in February 1943. In April, the squadron moved to Guadalcanal. Herrick’s first combat with the Japanese took place on 6 May when he and his wingman shared in the destruction of a float-plane. This was the first enemy aircraft shot down in the Pacific by fighters of the RNZAF. 

Herrick shot down an A6M Zero on 7 June when 12 No.15 Squadron P-40s, along with 88 other allied fighters, fought around 50 Japanese fighters.

Herrick was with No.15 Squadron on it’s second tour in the Pacific Theatre in September 1943, again flying escort missions and covering convoys.

By November 1943 Herrick was commanding No.15 Squadron flying missions to protect the beachhead on Bougainville but on one of these missions, he was wounded in the foot and consequently returned home to New Zealand. 

By January 1944 Squadron Leader Herrick was back in Europe flying Mosquito night fighters with No.305 (Polish) Squadron. He was shot down and killed on 16 June 1944.

Thanks to Ventura Publications for the information and images

Text and Images Copyright 2021 by Ventura Publications
This Page Created on 29 November, 2021
Last updated 29 November, 2021

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