Gerhard Barkhorn flew with JG/52 over four years, born   in East Prussia in 1919 he first saw action during the early stages of the Battle Of Britain - he failed to score one victory and was in fact shot down twice. Forced to crash land eight times during his flying career - only bailing out once when he was hit by a Spitfire over Dover (being hit again).  As he nursed his aircraft home - he was lucky to be picked up by a German patrol boat. After this, Barkhorn elected never to bail out again. It took Barkhorn until his 120th mission to score his first victory, but by 1944 Barkhorn was the leading scorer within the Luftwaffe closely followed by Hartman.


 In the summer of 1944 after returning from a mission Barkhorns flight came across a large formation of Russian Bombers, Barkhorn turned to engage but was bounced by an Air-Cobra he was very badly wounded in the legs and arms which lead to a four month stay in hospital. This is the chance Hartman needed to overtake Barkhorn as the leading Luftwaffe Ace and he took it.


   Towards the closing stages of the War he joined Galland's Squadron of experts -  JV44 flying the Me262. In all Gerhard Barkhorn flew 1,104 missions and logged 2,000 hours in his ME 109.