Biplane fighter aces

Soviet Union

Polkovnik Viktor Pavlovich Ivanov HSU

Viktor Ivanov was born on 29 December 1919 in the Pskov village of Anashkino. He lived in Leningrad and joined the army in 1939 and graduated from the Chuguyevsk Military Air School in 1940.

He started the war in June 1941 as a Mladshiy Leytenant in the 147 IAP and was engaged in the defence of the northern ports of Arkhangelsk and Murmansk before being transferred to the 768 IAP.

In August 1941, he claimed a Bf 109 while flying a Polikarpov I-153.

Later the 768 IAP was re-equipped with Hurricanes and Kittyhawks.

He flew circa 200 sorties with the 147 IAP and the 768 IAP before being transferred to the 910 IAP in August 1942. With this unit, he fought over Stalingrad, Kursk, Ukraina and Germany.

Around 13:30 on 3 January 1943, he intercepted an Fw200 together with Mladshii Leitenant Zhilin at low level. After Ivanov’s attack, the Condor crashed into the ground 4 km off Vency. When the Condor later was examined by Soviet troops reportedly found war booty in it belonging to the German General Paulus. The commanding officer of the regiment did not verify this claim.

On 9 October 1943. the 910 IAP was renamed the 148 GIAP.

During the spring of 1944 Ivanov became Komesk (commander) of an eskadrilya in the 148 GIAP operating over the 2nd Belorussian Front. At this time, he had the rank of Kapitan.

In March 1944, he led his unit against a Ju 88 formation. The unit shot down 10 of the Junkers before trying to ram the rest with the German aircraft running for their life. The commanding officer of the 6th Army witnessed this action and personally congratulated Ivanov.

By July 1944, he had flown 556 sorties and claimed 18 victories (4 shared) in 33 engagements.

On 22 August 1944, he was decorated with the Gold Medal of the Hero of the Soviet Union.

He claimed his last victory in April 1945.

Ivanov was also decorated with the Order of Lenin, the Order of the Red Banner (three times), the Order of Alexandr Nevskii, the Order of the Patriotic War 1st Class and the Order of the Red Star during the war.

Ivanov ended the war as a Major with 1 biplane victory and a total of 20 claimed in 750 missions and 50 air combats.

After the war, he remained in the Air Force and attended a regimental commander’s course.

Ivanov retired from active service in 1959 as a Polkovnik and settled in Leningrad.

Kill no. Date Time Number Type Result Plane type Serial no. Locality Unit
1 ??/08/41   1 Bf 109 Destroyed I-153     768 IAP
  03/01/43 (a) 13:30- 1 Fw200 (b) Destroyed Yak-7b   4km off Vency 910 IAP
? 26/03/44   1 E/a Destroyed       148 GIAP
? 26/03/44   1 E/a Destroyed       148 GIAP
? 26/03/44   1 E/a Destroyed       148 GIAP
? 26/03/44   1 E/a Destroyed       148 GIAP
20 ??/04/45   1 Fw190 Destroyed Yak-3     148 GIAP

Biplane victories: 1 destroyed.
TOTAL: 20 and 4 shared destroyed.
(a) Alternatively on 10 January 1943.
(b) Not official credited to his total.

Sovetskiye asy - Nikolay Bodrikhin, 1998 kindly provided by Ondrej Repka
Stalin's Eagles - Hans D. Seidl, 1998 Schiffer Publishing, ISBN 0-7643-0476-3
Stalin's Falcons - Tomas Polak and Christhoper Shores, 1999 Grub Street, London, ISBN 1-902304-01-2
Additional information kindly provided by Ondrej Repka.

Last modified 14 March 2007