Monday, March 29, 2010

Not something you see every day

Some hoon in a high performance Mitsubishi* speeding down the runway at Wellington Airport on Saturday:

* A genuine Second World War A6M2 Zero-Sen recovered from Indonesia in 1991 and restored to flying condition. Mitsubishi didn't always make cars. The Zero became a legend in the early part of the Pacific war when it was a better fighter than anything the Allies flew. It was eventually matched and bettered, but for a while it reigned supreme. However losing major wars tends to be detrimental to your gear no matter how legendary, and out of 11,000 built, only about 40 remain extant, many of them pulled from some overgrown and forgotten jungle airfield somewhere (like this one). Less than half a dozen actually fly (compared to around 40 Spitfires), so seeing one here is real once in a lifetime stuff (the last time a Zero flew in New Zealand was in 1945, the one in the Auckland Museum). This one was shipped here from California for the Wanaka airshow this weekend. After assembly in Tauranga it passed through Wellington on its way south and after the show it will be going back on the ship to California.

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