Hobbymaster 1/72nd scale HA5504 Curtiss P-40N “Rita/Orchid 13” 2105202, Capt. Robert DeHaven, 7th FS, 49th FG, August 1943. Buy online at Flying Tigers.
The Curtiss P-40 Warhawk first flew in 1938 as a modification of the Curtiss P-36 Hawk. Warhawk was the official U.S. designation while the name Tomahawk was used by the British Commonwealth and Soviet forces for the P-40B and C and Kittyhawk for P-40Ds and later variants. The P-40 was first used by British squadrons in North Africa and the Middle East in 1941. The P-40 lacked a two-speed supercharger making them inferior to German aircraft but was an adequate fighter in low altitude combat zones. Almost 12,000 P-40s were produced.
Robert DeHaven scored his first victory on July 14, 1943 and by December 10th of that year had attained an Ace status. DeHaven was like most pilots in that he too had art work applied on the aircraft. On the lower left cowling there was a white and purple orchid while the name Rita was applied in white script on the lower right cowling.
DeHaven flew 3 P-40Ns and would end the war in the Pacific with 10 P-40 victories and 4 P-38 victories that re-equipped the squadron between July and September 1944.