1. Wait until you see the whites of his eyes. Fire short bursts of one to two seconds only when your sights are definitely "ON"
2. Whilst shooting think of nothing else, brace the whole of your body: have both hands on the stick: concentrate on your ring sight.
3. Always keep a sharp lookout. "Keep your finger out".
4. Height gives you the initiative.
5. Always turn and face the attack.
6. Make your decisions promptly. It is better to act quickly even though your tactics are not the best.
7. Never fly straight and level for more than 30 seconds in the combat area.
8. When diving to attack always leave a proportion of your formation above to act as a top guard.
9. INITIATIVE, AGGRESSION, AIR DISCIPLINE, and TEAM WORK are words that MEAN something in Air Fighting.
10. Go in quickly - Punch hard - Get out!


Sailor Malan's famous 10 Commandments of engagement 



Sailor Malan (Adolph Gysbert Malan) was born on the 3rd of October 1910 in Wellington, South Africa. By the age of 14 he was a sea cadet on the training ship General Botha hence the name Sailor. In 1935, Malan had been accepted by the RAF on a short service commission and started flight training in early 1936. In December of that same year he was posted to 74 Squadron at Hornchurch and became a Flight Commander one year later.  After the outbreak of war, Malan went into action with 74 Squadron, with their newly equipped Spitfires, over the beaches of Dunkirk. On the 21st of May  1940 he scored his first victories just off the coast at Dunkirk destroying a Ju88, a He111 and damaged another Ju88. On the 22nd of May  he shared the destruction of a Ju88, on the 24th he shared a Do17 and destroyed a He111. On the 27th of May during his last combat over Dunkirk he shot down a Bf109, shared a Do17 and damaged two more. It was during the start  of the battle Of Britain that Malan, famously, disregarded the “textbook” formations and tactics of aerial combat. He firstly ordered that the machine guns on his Spitfire be re-aligned to a shooting distance of 250 yards, instead of the recommended 400 yards. He abandoned the “3 aircraft Vic” formation for a more unconventional four aircraft in-line attack. Within his squadron, Malan issued his unofficial “Ten Commandments” of aerial fighting




It was during the Battle Of Britain that Malan claimed perhaps his most famous victory none other than the famous Luftwaffe fighter Ace Werner Molders, Molders was the first Luftwaffe pilot of the second World War to reach the 20th victory mark. Molders was looking for his 27th victory,  he had just claimed his 26th when his messerschmitt was  raked with bullets. Had Spitfires been armed with cannon, Molders would not have been able to nurse his badly damaged machine back to the continent.  When he landed, his leg wounds were bad enough to put him into hospital. It was to be another month before Molders could claim victim number twenty-seven. Malan scored his last victories for 74 Squadron in February 1941 when he shot down a Bf109 on the 2nd and shared a Do17 on the 5th. He was then posted to lead the Biggin Hill Wing on March 10th where he remained until August. During this period at Biggin Hill, Malan shot down twelve Bf109’s, probably another Bf109, shared two more Bf109’s and damaged nine more. In March 1944 he took command of 145 Wing, which consisted of 329, 340, & 341 Squadrons (French). On D-Day, Malan led a Section of 340 Squadron as escorts to Horsa gliders being towed. Sailor Malan left the Raf  in 1946 with the rank of Group Captain and along with his British awards, he was decorated with the Croix de Guerre (Belgian), Croix de Guerre (French) and the Czech Military Cross. He moved back to South Africa with his family. Sailor Malan finished the War with 27 confirmed victories and another 7 shared there are many conflicting reports to Malans actual total many believe the score to be far greater.




Group Captain A.G."Sailor" Malan, Squadron Leader Jack Charles and Alan Deere, Biggin Hill, 1943