Mission No: 2/2
Campaign: Air Offensive Europe, March – April 1944
Date: 7 March 1944
Primary Target: Cambrai, FR, Marshalling Yard, On Target 95% (Superior)
Mission Profile: 2nd Element #4, Flight II, changed to 3rd Element #5, 200 Ft, No Fighter Cover
Results: Formation Off Target, 5% (Poor), Flight 95% (Superior)
EA engaged: Fw 190A-8 1=1 Undamaged
Fw 190A-5 1=1 Undamaged
Crew Mssns EA
Pilot: 2LT Nathaniel (Nat) Coell (1) (0)
Engineer: SSgt Jasper Caruthers (1) (0)
Gunner: Sgt Louis (Lou) Colfax (1) (0)
Damage: Superficial x1 (1), Right Fuel Tank: Self Seal (5) = 6 Peckham Points, AC ready next day 8 March 44
Our second mission was targeting the marshalling yards at Cambrai. Since the French are our allies it was decided to go in low to minimize collateral damage. We were also going in without any fighter cover to ‘minimize our signature.’
We took off into rainy skies, the poor visibility causing problems with the assembly and Banshee ended up out of position. I’m sure I’ll hear about it from the Old Man. In fact, I’d expect the whole Squadron will be practicing formation flying as the entire Flight fell apart over the English Channel. Fortunately, we didn’t encounter any German fighters till we hit the target.
The rain followed us all the way to Cambrai, but it wasn’t thick enough to keep Jerry from finding us. Two Fws bore in on Banshee, though only one made an attack. Jerry put a few rounds into the bomb bay and the right wing, but did little actual damage and moved on. While the GAF was up and about the Flak gunners must have been huddled out of the rain as we experienced not fire on target ingress. Lead identified the AP and despite being spread across half the sky we managed to put most of the bombs on target.
The explosions must have woken the Flak gunners as we received some desultory fire on target egress. Lou (Sgt Colfax) reported seeing some more Jerry fighters lifting off from a distant airfield, but they were unable to reach us before we’d cleared out.
The flight home was uneventful except for a brief moment of uncertainty over our location that was quickly resolved. Approaching the home field I was disappointed to see that the rain hadn’t lifted as promised. Still, Banshee set down without incident. The minimal damage suffered from the Fw will be easily repaired and Banshee will be ready to fly again tomorrow. Now, if I can just finding something to stuff in the back of my pants before that ‘discussion’ with the CO about formation discipline.
Nathaniel Coell, 2LT, USAAF, commanding
This mission was flown using a combination of B-26: The Marauder Strikes, Version 4, B-26: The Marauder Strikes, Low-Level Missions (B-26LLM), A-20 Havoc – a B-26 Variant (A-20), and an earlier version of low-level mission rules (ELLM), and the Fuel Consumption Rules. When referring to Rules/Tables the reference is to the core B-26 rules unless otherwise noted. Suggestions appear in Italics. As much as possible, the intent was to follow the B-26 rules.
Target Determination: DR 21 then 2 on AIR OFFENSIVE EUROPE MARCH & APRIL 1944 resulting in Marshalling Yard/Cambrai.
MP-2a & MP-2b were used to determine the weather for TakeOff, DR 10 +1 for Mar-Apr in England = 11 yielding Bad modified to Poor as per note e; Predicted at Target, DR 8 yielding Fair; and Predicted for Base Upon Return, DR 8 + 1for Mar-Apr in England yielding Fair.
MP-3 was skipped as this was to be a low-level mission; instead altitude was derived from G-4a (ELLM) at the time of determining formation position. Consider incorporating this as LLMP-3 in B-26LLM.
IP and associated modifiers was determined from MP-4, DR 2 for no modifiers.
MP-5 was used to determine Expected Flak At Target, all low level missions face Light flak without radar .
Enemy Air Force Resistance level was determined from MP-6, DR 7 for Moderate.
MP-7 was skipped, instead determining Fighter Cover based upon the rule in ELLM, DR 4 No Cover. Consider incorporating this as Table LLMP-7 in B-26LLM.
Position was based upon G-4A from ELLM rather than MP-8. DR 7 + 4 for 0-5 Missions = 11 producing 2nd Element #4, DR 4 for Flight II, and DR 6 for 200 Ft with +1 to enemy pilot status. Consider incorporating G-4a as LLMP-8 in B-26LLM.
Turn 0, Takeoff and Assembly:
Takeoff was rolled on TOA-1a, DR 9 – 1 for pilot skill = 8, for an uneventful Takeoff.
Takeoff Event & Assembly was rolled on TOA-2a. DR 6 caused a reroll on G-4a (ELLM) – Now 3rd element #5, shedding the +1 to enemy pilot status.
Used the Fuel Rules. Assumed 22 boxes/wing as per A-20 rules. Takeoff with Bombload used 1.5 boxes.
Turn 1, Zone 1:
Formation Events rolled on Z-1a, DR 8 is NA.
With no fighter support, there was no need to roll on Z-1b.
Fuel used, 1.5 boxes, 3 cumulative.
Turn 2, Zone 2:
Rolled on LLMT-1a (B-26LLM) instead of MT-1b. This was done throughout the mission. DR 5 results in Formation Check. Roll on LLMT-1b(B-26LLM) DR 11 results in Loose Flight.
Checked for detection on LLMT-2 (B-26LLM). DR 9 is undetected.
Fuel used, 1.5 boxes, 4.5 cumulative.
Turn 3, Zone 3:
LLMT-1a (B-26LLM) DR 6 results in NA.
Checked for detection on LLMT-2 (B-26LLM). DR 8 + 1 for Over Land to Target = 9 undetected.
Fuel used, 1.5 boxes, cumulative 6.
Turn 4, Zone 4, Target Zone Ingress:
Determined Weather Over Target using TZ-1. DR 10 result, Poor.
LLMT-1a (B-26LLM) DR 7 resulting in NA.
Checked for detection LLMT-2 (B-26LLM). DR 9 + 1 Over land to Target = 10, detected.
Rolled for GAF on MT-2. DR 6 -2 for low level, +1 for zone, -1 Poor weather = 6 resulting 1 Wave. Modifiers from LLMT-2 (B-26LLM).
Roll on CT-1a, DR 64 yields 2 Fighters @12; CT-1b, DR 1 & 2 both High; and CT-2a, DR 7 + 1 loose flight = 8 Avg & DR 5 + 1 loose flight = 6 Kaczmarek; and Adv CT-1a, DR 8 + 2 for FW heavy area = 10 yielding an Fw 190A-8 & DR 10 + 2 =12 Special with subsequent DR of 11 producing an Fw 190A-5. Dorsal Turret may fire per M-1 (A-20). DR 6 – 1 for twin guns firing at Fw 190A-8 = 5 on CT-4a for a miss.
EA (Fw 190A-8 Avg pilot) rolled 8 on CT-5a for a hit then another 8 on CT-5b for 1 hit x 2.5 for an Fw 190A-8 = 2 hits. Rolled on B-5 (A-20) for hit location; DR 8 is Bomb Bay with a DR of 6 on P-3 (A-20) being Superficial; and DR 7 on B-5 (A-20)indicating a Starboard Wing hit. DR 10 then DR 6 on BL-1 (A-20), Self Seal Fuel Tank hit.
No visible damage so no subsequent attacks as per B-26 rule 7.39.1a.
Checked Flak Intensity TZ-2. DR 3 – 1 for Poor Weather = 2 resulting in no Flak.
Skipped LLTZ-1 (B-26LLM) as this table seems superfluous.
Rolled to identify AP on TZ-1. DR 7 + 1 player is Togglier = 8 for AP Identified.
Rolled on TZ-4b. DR 9 – 1 pilot skill = 8 yielding a result of In Formation. TZ-4a DR of 11 -2 for Poor Weather + 1 for Large Target = 11 for a result of On Target 250 ft. Consider adding a modifier for Low Level either here or on TZ-5a.
Rolled on TZ-5a. DR 6 +2 for low altitude = 8 for 100% - 5% for Loose Flight.
Fuel used, -2 (1 +.5 for bombs onboard + .5 for IP turn), cumulative 8.
Turn 5, Zone 4, Target Zone Egress:
Check for Formation Event on LLMT-1a (B-26LLM). DR 7 NA.
Determine egress flak using TZ-2. DR 6 – 1 poor Weather – 1 Evasive Action after Bomb Run =4 resulting in Weak. DR 1 – 1 for Poor Weather -1 For Evasive Action = Inaccurate. TZ-3a DR 7 is a miss.
Rolled on MT-2. Skipped LLMT-2 (B-26LLM) as I figured after just overflying the target the A-20 would be ‘detected.’ DR 9 +1 Zone, -2 Low Level, -1 Poor Weather = 6 resulting in 1 Wave.
Table CT-1a DR 52 is Vertical Climb. Removed as per note in ELLM rules regarding Vertical climb attacks on Low Level missions.
Fuel use -1.5, 1 per zone + .5 for evasive action. Cumulative 9.5.
Turn 6, Zone 3 return:
Check for Formation Event on LLMT-1a (B-26LLM). DR 10 Navigation Check. Table MT-1d DR 10 +1 Togglier, -1 Poor Weather = 10, On Course.
Check for detection on LLMT-2 (B-26LLM). DR 7 + 4 Over Land From Target = 11 Detected.
MT-2 DR 5 -2 Low Level = 3, No Enemy Activity.
Fuel use -1, cumulative 10.5.
Turn 7, Zone 2 return:
Check for Formation Event on LLMT-1a (B-26LLM). DR 4 Formation Check. Roll on LLMT-1b (B-26LLM) DR 6 -1 for Loose Flight = 5 Normal Formaion.
Check for detection on LLMT-2 (B-26LLM). DR 6 +3 (Averaged values for Over Land From Target & Over Water From Target as zone is mixed.) = 9 Undetected.
Fuel use -1, cumulative (11.5).
Turn 8, Zone 1 return:
Check for weather at Base on TZ-1. DR 10 on Predicted Fair = Poor.
Check for Formation Event on LLMT-1a (B-26LLM). DR 7 yields NA.
Check Fuel Use before Landing Roll. 1 + .5 for Landing = -1.5, cumulative 12.
Land using LT-1a. DR 9 -1 Pilot Skill, -1 Poor Weather = 7. AC & Crew Safe.
To determine number/type/position of attacking fighters remember to apply restriction on Vertical climbs and Dives from the ELLM rules.
Defensive Fire use M-1 (A-20) to determine Fields of Fire in lieu of CT-4b.
Defensive Fire To Hit and Damage use CT-4a and CT-4c modified as follows:
Treat the nose guns (A-20)s as Package Guns on all charts
Treat the A-20J nose gun (A-20) as Twin .50s.
Treat the Dorsal Turret (A-20) or Twin .50s as Twin .50s.
Treat the Ventral Gun (A-20) as a single .50.
For enemy fighter Hit and Damage use CT-5a and CT-5b.
For hit locations and Damage use B-5 (A-20) and BL-1 (A-20), P-1 through P-6 (A-20). Follow the combat procedures per the B-26 rules.
Fuel leaks on BL-1 (A-20) would be handled as per Fuel consumption rules.
LLMT-1c (B-26LLM) DR 4-7 has the notes “If Detected” and “If Undetected.” Since Detection is rolled after Formation Events, is this the result from the previous turn?
I did not check for Detection in Zone 1 where no enemy intercept was possible.