- Delivered: April 26, 1943
- Waycross, GA, Memphis, TN
- 4th FTU – Nashville, TN
- 4th FTU – Brownsville, TX
- AAF at Greenwood, MS
- August 1945-Altus, OK stricken and sold as surplus
The P-51 was created for the RAF to replace the P-40 Warhawk. It took 117 days for North American to design, build and fly the P-51, this was so quick, in fact, that the engine wasn’t ready. The latest Laminar-flow wing reduced drag, wheels from the AT-6 and an existing Allison engine were used to complete the P-51. The poor high altitude performance of the P-51A was soon rectified with the arrival of the newly designed Rolls-Royce Merlin engine.
The Mustang was flown by eleven allied air forces in addition to the USAAF. At a range of 750 miles the P-51 would often meet bombers near the Dutch/German border to relieve the shorter ranged P-38 and P-47. No combat airplane in the war could fly as far, go as high and fight as hard as the popular Mustang.
This surplus P-51A was used as a civilian racing plane in Cleveland, Ohio. This “razorback” was restored to original condition, note the F.24 cameras behind the pilot’s seat. This aircraft came to Yanks incomplete until a belly scoop, landing gear door, windscreen and clam shell doors were found in an old barn. The entire restoration took 12 years.