Merlins on ex-John Smith ‘Mossie’ to be powered up at Classic Fighters Omaka show
Having been restored to ground-running condition at the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre at Marlborough, South Island, it was announced on 21 February that Mosquito FBVI TE910/NZ2336 will be making its engine-running show debut at the Yealands Classic Fighters Omaka show over the Easter weekend, 7-9 April.
This machine (see Aeroplane July 2022) was famously acquired in 1955 by farmer John Smith and kept in ‘timewarp’ condition on his property at Mapua, not being removed until after his death in August 2019. When that occurred, as we reported in our September 2020 issue, the remains of a second example, TE881/NZ2345, built in May 1945 by Standard Motors in Coventry, were also discovered along with two sets of engine nacelles and undercarriage units.
The Rolls-Royce Merlins on NZ2336 will be run up on each day, although show director Gavin Conroy says, “We should stress that for this to happen, we need perfect weather and no sign of rain before putting the aircraft on the flightline. Being such a special aircraft with a structure made of wood, we do not want any rain on it, no matter how little.”