Biplane fighter aces

Soviet Union

Kapitan N. P. Mozhaev

In June 1941, Mozhaev served in the 123 IAP of the 10 SmAD. The unit was at this time based in the Kobrin-Pinsk area. The unit was partially re-equipped with Yak-1s but as late as 19 June only twenty Yak-1s were assembled at Imenin airfield and the unit thus started the war still equipped with Polikarpov I-153s.

At 10:00 on 22 June 1941, eight Bf 109Es from IV/JG 51 attacked four I-153s from 123 IAP flown by Kapitan Mozhaev, Leytenant Georgiy Zhidov (his second take-off during the day), Leytenant Petr Ryabtsev and Leytenant Nazarov over the Brest fortress.
Zhidov claimed two shared Bf 109 shot down, but shortly afterwards his own aircraft was severely hit before another I-153 came to his aid. Mozhaev claimed a Bf 109 while Ryabtsev claimed another in a “taran” ramming attack after having expended all his ammunition. Ryabtsev managed to successfully bail out of his stricken fighter.
No German fighters seem to have been lost in this combat but Oberleutnant Karl-Gottfried Nordmann claimed an I-153 (most possibly Ryabtsev) at 10:10.

Mozhaev ended the war with 1 biplane victory.

Kill no. Date Time Number Type Result Plane type Serial no. Locality Unit
1 22/06/41 10:00 1 Bf 109 (a) Destroyed I-153   Brest area 123 IAP

Biplane victories: 1 destroyed.
TOTAL: 1 destroyed.
(a) Claimed in combat with JG51. 123 IAP claimed two and two shared Bf 109s in this combat but these losses have not been possible to verify with German sources.

Barbarossa – The Air Battle: July-December 1941 – Christer Bergström, 2007, Chevron Publishing Limited, ISBN 978-1-85780-270-2
Black Cross/Red Star Volume I - Christer Bergström and Andrey Mikhailov, 2000 Pacifica Military History, ISBN 0-935553-48-7
Additional information kindly provided by Yuri Shakhov.

Last modified 20 January 2008