Camel’s first flight ends in crash
French Sopwith Camel replica ‘B6413’ (F-AZZC) crashed just moments into its first flight at 6.45pm on 24 September. In calm weather conditions, the reproduction WWI biplane fighter, which had taken builder John Shaw nine years to produce, experienced engine failure 150 feet above Les Pallis airfield, Orbigny. Shaw sustained only minor injuries but the Camel received substantial damage. ‘With perfect conditions late yesterday afternoon, we prepared for the flight’, he wrote on Facebook the following day. ‘Everything went well at the start with good pressure, good revs, good control movements and a speedy take off. Unfortunately, it did not end so well after low-altitude engine failure. I am OK but the Camel less so. Oh well, more work!’ Shaw’s second Camel project, F-AZZB, now awaits completion.
The Camel looking very much worse for wear following its unfortunate mishap