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Old 27th September 2006, 01:58
Rob Romero Rob Romero is offline
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% of Verfiable Victories of Various Aces.

I’ve started what I think is a fun and potentially important thread at the WWI aviation website “The Aerodrome”: While I recognize this endeavor will be imperfect (in some cases more so than others), it may provide a SENSE of the actual success of various aces. Hopefully, it will expand and eventully (perhaps WELL into the future) provide us with a database. I am relying on the contributions of others and cannot vouch for the accuracy or even the sincerity of their submissions –I am relying on the web community to keep tabs bring debatable data to light. Perhaps in cases of great controversy a range could be established (i.e., pilot X claimed 400 aircraft and from documents it is possible to veryify that he shot down 150 with another 150 possible, etc.).

Great Work so far Guys –here’s what we got so far: Lets keep it goin!!!

WWI Aces
74 of 80 Claims ( 92.5%) Manfred von Richthofen
35 of 36 Claims ( 97.2%) Francesco Baracca - KIA 19 Jun 1918
33 of 40 Claims ( 82.5%) Lothar von Richthofen
31 of 57 Claims ( 54.4%) James McCudden (Possibly 36 of 57 Claims 63.2%)
17 of 17 Claims (100.0%) Edmund Nathanael (German-Jewish Ace)
14 of 22 Claims ( 63.6%) Hermann Göring (Possibly 15 of 22 Claims 68.2%)
14 of 15 Claims ( 93.3%) Max Immelmann (2-3 additional Verifed Victories)
?? of 72 Claims Billy Bishop (Ooops did I jus open a can of worms?!?) ;-)
?? of 48 Claims Werner Voss

What about Voss guys –that should be easy for those of you who have Franks’ book.

??? of 101 Claims Josef ‘Pips’ Priller -largely verified by Johnnie Johnson (38)
100 of 151 Claims (~66.2%) Marseille (158) 151 Afrika + 7 Battle of Britain –perhaps someone can come up with a more precise figure on Hans-Joachim Marseille’s claims based on Hans Ring & Christopher Shores “Fighters over the desert; the air battles in the Western Desert, June 1940 to December 1942.”
25 of 40 Claims (62.5%) Richard Bong USAAF PTO Ace of Aces.
21 of 28 Claims (75.0%) Gabby Gabreski USAAF ETO Ace of Aces
15 of 64 Claims (23.4%) Saburo Sakai –top scoring surviving IJNAF ace

Also does anyone have a sense of Walter Schuck (206) Hermann Graf (212) and Alfred Grislawski (133) verifyable victories from Christer Bergström’s recent cross referenced works?
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Old 27th September 2006, 11:05
Laurent Rizzotti Laurent Rizzotti is offline
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Re: % of Verfiable Victories of Various Aces.

I think you can divide the claims into three categories:

1) valid ones: the target is identified and went down, or the unit is identified and has as many losses than the claims of its opponent
2) invalid ones: the target is identified, or his unit, and wasn't destroyed
3) incertain ones: target not identified, at least one loss known but more claims than losses.

Most of the cases will be in the 1st and 3rd category, with a majority of the latter. When you have one side claim 70 victories and shooting down 50 aircraft, you will probably have something like 10 valide claims and 60 incertain ones.

A method to try to get closer to the real score of WWII pilots will be to use the US method of using fractions for claims.

For example, in the above case, the 10 pilots having claimed identified targets (location and time corresponding, away from the main battle and so on) will be given full credit (1 claim = 1 victory) and the 60 other claims, corresponding to the remaining 40 losses, will be valued each 40/60 = 0.666 victory... This is as close as you can get in many cases.

For example, RAF overclaiming in 41-42 over France was often very high, and you will find more combat reports with clear 'proof' of the destruction of the enemy than real German losses, so I doubt one will ver be able to say which claim are valuable and which should be rejected.
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