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Bearcat-078103.jpg
The Grumman F8F Bearcat (affectionately called "Bear") was an American single-engine naval fighter aircraft of the 1940s. It went on to serve into the mid-20th century in the United States Navy and other air forces, and would be the company's final piston engined fighter aircraft. The Bearcat concept was inspired by the early 1943 evaluation of a captured Focke-Wulf Fw 190 by Grumman test pilots and engineering staff. After flying the Fw 190, Grumman test pilot Bob Hall wrote a report directed to President Leroy Grumman, who then personally laid out the specifications for Design 58, the successor to the Hellcat. Design 58 closely emulated the design philosophy of the German fighter, although no part of the Fw 190 was copied. The F8F Bearcat stemmed from Design 58 with the primary missions of outperforming highly maneuverable late-model Japanese fighter aircraft such as the A6M5 Zero. A role which later developed was that defending the fleet against incoming airborne suicide (kamikaze) attacks. (wikipedia)..The Bearcat on the photo is owned by the TFC (The Fighter Collection - see http://fighter-collection.com ). This Photo was taken in the 80ies during a meeeting in Gruyere (Switzerland). The pilot is Stephen Grey. Photo scanned from original on paper.