Will I ever be able to land safely at my own station with an A-20? It seems not... This was my third mission in a row with an A-20 which have had a similar fate. This was Mrs Thompson on her first mission.
The target was in Zone 5 today, again. I am flying a new G and using fuel consumption. Good weather over Paris had changed to bad. The aim point was found by only the lead flight in Box 1, I was in Box two. We aborted and headed back to England. The bombs had to be onboard over France (house rule) until we reached the Channel where we could dump them. I calculated how much fuel I had left and found that I could land in Zone 1.
I was now in Zone 4. Then came a fighter...
It was a 110G-2 attacking from 7 low. He hit the inboard tank in the left wing and it caused a leak. This was not good. After he left, I recalculated the remaining fuel. It would run out for engine 1, but I could still use the A-20 cross feed and have engine 1 and 2 use fuel from the same tank. Unfortunately, I had to dump ths bombs and everything else now to save some fuel (ie. gain two boxes) and I thought I'd have to ditch in Zone 2, but this is an E-W Zone so I could reach England, which I did, and I had no time to fool around with looking for a good place to land if I did not find an airfield on my first attempt. That failed, but I found open ground and I belly landed safely.
It will take some time before my ship will be airworthy again, which I hope it will! It's in perfectly good order, except for a damaged belly, no break and a holed tank on the left side and the wing root was hit once on the same side. Plus, I am far away from an airfield.
My ship was repaired. I flew the next mission about a week later. This time it was to MY at Valencienne. Bomb run was fair. Weak, inaccurate flak hit my right wing after the bomb run.
Outboard tank fuel fire!
This time I tried the optional rule of diving. I managed to put it out, but the wing roots took some damage. The right outboard tank was empty now, but I had enough fuel to reach England. However, I was out of formation... and off course.
I eventually got lost.
No little friends in sight and a lone 109G-6 attacked. My gunner damaged it and he disappeared. I was still lost, no enemies showed up, but I tried the radio again and a flight of P-51s appeared, what a relief! I was on course with their help and got back to base safely.