Soviet Records of 4 Mar 1943 Combat
The circumstances of this battle are known thanks to the historian A.Y. Kuznetsov. It was he who suggested that an aircraft from 4.(F)/122 was shot down.
This is reported in a footnote:
Note No.5 states: "5. In the episode 59 for March 4, 1943, according to the log of operations of the 35th IAP Air Defence a plane was detected at 11.30 by "Reduta" radar at 70 km from Batumi. The enemy aircraft was attacked one after another by two Yak-1 fighters from the 25th IAF of the Black Sea Fleet (Capt. Kholdeyev and Sgt. Baigushev) and three LaGG-3s from the 35th IAP of Air Defence (Capt. Kantsedalov, Lt. Topyrik and Sgt. Chuprakov). The enemy tried to hide in the clouds, but being pursued by Captain Kantsedalov, was shot down and crashed into the sea at 12.12 p.m. 42 km from Batumi. "The Junkers held on to the water for some time, with four men on the flats. The downed aircraft quickly sank and the crew swam in the water. The MBR-2 sent to the crash site found only oil stains on the water (information provided by A.Y. Kuznetsov)".
Unfortunately, the combat operations log for 25th Fighter Aviation Regiment of the Air Force of the Black Sea Fleet is not available. But there are logs of combat operations of the 35th Fighter Aviation Regiment and the 298th Fighter Air Defence Division.
Combat log of the 35th Fighter Aviation Regiment.
The entry in the logbook of the 35th IAP:
11:30 One enemy aircraft was detected by «Redut» radar. The aircraft was on an azimuth of 320 degrees, 70 km from Batumi. Further aircraft movement was detected at a heading of 330 degrees to a point 80 kilometres from Batumi. The Ju 88 then turned to a heading of 220 degrees, reaching an azimuth of 310 degrees. Then turned around on a 130-degree course. It flew towards Batumi, reaching a distance of 40 km from Batumi. Then turned around to 180-degree azimuth and then to 150-degree azimuth. Flying to Batumi with a 150-degree course. Approached Batumi at 28 km distance. Then turned 20 degrees to the northwest and started heading in the direction of 345 degrees.
At this time, three LaGG-3s (Captain Kontsedalov, Lieutenant Topirik and Senior Sergeant Chuprakov) performed a training mission over the Kobuleti airfield. The planes took off at 11:20. At 11:34, four minutes after the first enemy aircraft were detected by radar, two LaGG-3s (Lieutenant Topirik and Senior Sergeant Chuprakov) were directed by radio from the regiment's command post to the zone No 2 (20 km north-west of Batumi). To meet the enemy aircraft.
At 11:37 two LaGG-3s took off from the airfield for patrolling in zone 1 (20 km west of Batumi).
At 11:40 a.m., two I-153s took off from the airfield to patrol over Batumi.
At 11:41 am from the regiment's command centre, radio orders were given to Captain Kontzedalov, who was flying training missions over Kobuleti: "Go to zone 2 and meet Lieutenant Topirik and Senior Sergeant Chuprakova. You will be in charge of the group of three LAG-3s".
At 11.44 a radio message was sent to Captain Kontzedalov: "The enemy is 325 degrees along the azimuth, 25 kilometres from Batumi.
All aircraft in the air were informed about the enemy from the regiment's command post.
At 11:50 three LaGG-3s were directed towards enemy at 347 degrees.At 11:53, the LaGGs are directed at a course of 345 degrees. The order was to fly towards the enemy. At this time the Ju 88 was flying 10-12 km west of Poti and keeping a course of 345 degrees.
From 11:53 till 12:00 three LaGG-3s were permanently directed by radio from the regiment's command post to the enemy. At 12:02 Captain Kontzedalov reported by radio: "I see the enemy. At 12:03 Captain Kontzedalov reported: "Attacking enemy."
Three LaGG-3s on a 350 degree course encountered an enemy Ju 88 west of Poti 10-12 kilometres away. The Ju 88 was flying on a 180 degree course. It was attacked by two pilots of the 62nd Fighter Aviation Brigade at an altitude of 2,000 metres. They attacked with Yak-1 (Captain Khaldeyev) and LaGG-3 (Sergeant Buigashev). Captain Kontsedalov and Lieutenant Topirik attacked the Ju 88.
The enemy Ju 88 aircraft, manoeuvring horizontally and vertically, entered the cloud cover.
After leaving the cloud cover, the pair of LaGG-3s, Lieutenant Topyrik and Senior Sergeant Chuprakov, lost the enemy.
Captain Kontzedalov, in pursuit of the Ju 88, made two attacks from the left rear, two attacks from the right rear. He attacked from an angle of ¼, 10-15 meters in excess, from a distance of 200-100 meters. After the fighter's attacks, the Ju 88 proceeded to descend, with reduced speed. The Ju 88 then began to glide. Captain Kontzedalov came close behind the Ju 88 and began firing on it at point-blank range. The Ju 88 turned around and hit the water at 12:12 noon, 42 kilometres from Batumi. After the crash, the Ju 88 held on to the water for some time. The crew of 4 got out of the plane and stood on the wings of the aircraft. Captain Kontsedalov flew over the Ju 88 at an altitude of 25-30 metres.
Kontzedalov observed the Ju 88 sinking into the water. The crew floated on the surface of the water. After this, Captain Kontsedalov flew to his airfield in Kobuleti. At 12:30 he made a safe landing.
Lieutenant Topirik: 30 rounds of BS ammunition.
Our planes are undamaged.
Battle log of units of 298th Fighter Division of Air Defence
"On 4.3.1943 three LaGG-3s (Captain Kontzedalov, Senior Lieutenant Topirik and Senior Sergeant Chuprakov) were performing a training mission. They were directed to meet the enemy aircraft. At 12:03 three LaGG-3s flying on 350-degree course met enemy Ju 88 flying west of Poti at 12 km distance. The Ju 88 was flying on a 180 degree course. Earlier it was attacked by pilots of 62 Fighter Aviation Regiment with Yak-1.
Captain Kontzedalov and Senior Lieutenant Topirik attacked the Ju 88. The enemy aircraft, manoeuvring horizontally and vertically, entered the cloud cover.
After leaving the cloud cover, the pair of LaGG-3s (Senior Lieutenant Topyrik and Senior Sergeant Chuprakov) lost sight of the enemy aircraft.
Captain Kontzedalov, pursuing Ju 88, made two left rear and two right attacks at an angle of 15-20 degrees. Kontsedalov attacked the Ju 88 from a height of 15-20 metres above it, from a distance of 200-150 metres.
After the attack by Kontsedalov, Ju 88 began to descend. Then the Ju 88 began to plan for a landing. It landed on the water at a distance of 42 km from Batumi and sank.
The enemy aircraft was shot down by captain Kontsedalov and two pilots of the 62d Fighter Aviation Brigade. All our aircraft landed at their own airfield".
The table on the left-hand page of the logbook.
Date, time: 4.3.43. 11:20Flight time (time spent by aircraft in the air): 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Total number of sorties: 3
On patrol: 3
Number of combat sorties. Number of enemy aircraft encounters: 3 / 1.
Number of enemy aircraft shot down: 1 Ju 88.Ammunition consumption: BS - 220. ShVAK - 11.
Evgeniy Puruyshin wrote:
N.B. I have changed the text to make it easier to translate:
1. I have written full abbreviations of words such as military ranks. "St. Lieutenant" is "Senior Lieutenant"; "St. Sergeant" is "Staff Sergeant". Also fully disclosed abbreviations. For example, "IAP". I wrote: "fighter aviation regiment".
2. Instead of "Ю-88" I wrote: "Ju 88" everywhere.
3.I also had to make simpler sentences. For example, I divided one big sentence into 2-3 small ones. In some places I rearranged the order of words. I also used synonyms. For example, the sentence was: "From 11.53 to 12.00 from the regiment's command post, three LaGG-3s were constantly radioed at the enemy, and at 12.02 Captain Kontsedalov reported on the radio: 'I see the enemy'. I wrote down: "From 11.53 till 12.00 three LaGG-3s were constantly directed at the enemy by radio from the regiment's command post. At 12:02 Captain Kontsedalov reported by radio: 'I see the enemy'.
4.If the source got the last name wrong, I wrote it correctly. And indicated in a footnote that the surname was spelled wrong in the source.
5.I typed the text according to the modern rules of spelling and punctuation. For example, according to the rules in force at that time, it was customary to write "itti". The modern spelling rule is "idti" («go»). I have also placed commas.
Biographies of participating Soviet Pilots
Victory over Ju 88 on 4 March 1943 was credited to 4 pilots (group victory). These were M. Kontzedalov, N. Topirik, A. Buigashev and V. Khaldeyev. E. Chuprakov took part in the interception of Ju 88, but did not engage in aerial combat because he lost the enemy aircraft.A.Buigashev and V.Khaldeev died in 1943. M.Kontsedalov, N.Topirik and E.Chuprakov survived the war.Biographical information about the pilots.Note: The information was found on Internet sites "Memory of people" and "Soviet fighter pilots. 1936-1953". If you will use this information, please link to it."Memory of the People" (https://pamyat-naroda.ru) is a portal with documents from the archives of the Russian Ministry of Defence (TsAMO, TsAMO)."Soviet fighter pilots. 1936-1953" (https://sovpilots.ru) is a website about Soviet fighter pilots. Its author is the historian Mikhail Bykov.
Biographical information on M.I. Kontsedalov.
|Surname. First name. Patronymic.||Kontzedalov Mitrofan Ivanovich|
|Date of birth:||November 09, 1913.
|Place of birth:||town of Valuiki, Valuisky district, Kursk region, Russia.|
|Date of enlistment:||09 September 1935.|
|Military unit||35th IAP, 298th IAD, Air Defence|
|Date of the completion of military service:||15 April 1959.|
|Awards:||Two Orders of the Red Banner (1943, 1956).
Two Orders of the Red Star (1945, 1950).
Order of the Great Patriotic War (II class) (1985).
Medal "for the Defence of the Caucasus" (1944).
Medal "for Combat Service" (1945).
Medal "for Victory over Germany in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945" (1945. (1945).
|Air victories||M.Kontsedalov in 1941-1945 as a member of group shot down 3 enemy planes.
The document awarding M. Kontsedalov the Order of the Red Banner was signed on 2 February 1943. Therefore, there is no mention of the air battle on March 4, 1943. There is a description of the battle on October 1, 1942, in which Kontsedalov shot down another Ju 88.
Note: M. Kontsedalov's photo was taken after the war (1950s or 1960s).
Biographical information on N.V. Topýrik
|Surname. First name. patronymic.||Topyrik, Nikolai Vasilyevich|
|Date of birth:||March 27, 1918|
|Place of birth:||Kolodezhi village, Cherven district, Minsk region, Belarus.|
|Date of enlistment:||05 January 1938|
|Military unit||35th IAP, 298th IAD, Air Defence|
|Date of the completion of military service:||30.09.1960|
|Awards:||Two Orders of the Patriotic War, II class (1943, 1987).
Order of the Red Star (1953).
Medal "For the Defence of the Caucasus" (1944).
Medal “For Victory over Germany in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945». (1945).
|Air victories||No exact data. Presumably, 2 group victories over Ju 88 (January 26, 1943 and March 4, 1943).|
Topirik was submitted for the Order of the Red Star, , but he was granted the higher award - the Order of the Great Patriotic War.The document was signed on February 2, 1943, that is before the time of the combat with Ju 88 of Aufklärungsgruppe 122.
Biographical information on E.P. Chuprakov
|Surname. First name. patronymic.||Chuprakov, Evgeny Petrovich|
|Date of birth:||December 22, 1922.|
|Place of birth:||City of Kirov, Kirov region, Russia.|
|Date of enlistment:||January 27, 1941.|
|Military unit||35th IAP, 298th IAD, Air Defence|
|Date of the completion of military service:||25 August 1960.|
|Awards:||Order of the Red Banner (1957).
Two Orders of the Great Patriotic War (1943, 1985)
Order of the Red Star (1956)
Medal "For Combat Service" (1951)
Medal "For the Defence of the Caucasus" (1944)
Medal "For Victory over Germany in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945" (1945) (1945)
|Air victories||4 group victories|
Award sheet for E.Chuprakov, signed on April 4, 1943, presented for the Order of the Patriotic War, II Degree. It noted that he shot down two Ju 88s in group aerial combat. There are no details of air battles in the award document.
Note: The photo of E. Chuprakov was taken after the war (1950s or 1960s).
Biographical information on V.L. Khaldeev
|Surname. First name. patronymic.||Khaldeyev Vladimir Leontyevich|
|Date of birth:||23 August 1916. Other information: 1911.|
|Place of birth:||Moscow, Russia.|
|Date of enlistment:||1937. Other information: 1929..|
|Military unit||25th Fighter Aviation Regiment of the Black Sea Fleet Air Force|
|Date of the completion of military service:||Died on May 21, 1943 in an air battle near the town of Gelendzhik. He was shot down by a German fighter.|
|Awards:||Two Orders of the Red Banner (1940, 1941).
Order of the Great Patriotic War (II degree) (posthumously, 1943).
|Air victories||2 individual victories in aerial combat. 12 group victories. Completed about 150 combat sorties.|
Award certificate for V. Khaldeev, signed on March 5, 1943. Presented for the Order of the Patriotic War.The document mentions the victory over Ju 88 on March 4, 1943. But there are no details of the battle.
"A brief, specific statement of personal military exploits or merits""To the cause of the Party of Lenin-Stalin and the socialist Motherland. Awarded the Order of the Red Banner for services to the fatherland in the battle against the Finns (1939-40).During the Patriotic War from 22.06.1941 till 01.08.1942 he was awarded two Orders of the Red Banner. During the period from 01.08.1942 till 04.03.1943 Captain Khaldeyev made 85 combat sorties to cover the Poti main base and the ships on passage to the sea. On 06.11.1942, as leading pilot, of a pair of Yak-1s he shot down an enemy Ju 88 reconnaissance aircraft near Poti main base.On 04.03.1943 at 12.10 a.m. as part of a group shot down a Ju 88 reconnaissance aircraft near the Poti Main Base. On the Yak-1 he was the lead pilot in a pair of aircraft.Possessing exceptional tactical competence and flying skill, he destroys enemy planes with bold and daring attacks.A resolute and enterprising commander of an air squadron, he skilfully trains his pilots in tactical techniques and tricks for destroying enemy aircraft. For the shown courage, bravery and boldness in destroying enemy reconnaissance planes on 06.11.1942 and 04.03.1942 Captain Khaldeev deserves the government award - the order of Great Patriotic War of the first degree".
Biographical information on A.K. Buigashev
|Surname. First name. patronymic.||Buigashev Aleksandr Konstantinovich (recorded in some documents as Buigashov)|
|Date of birth:||1919|
|Place of birth:||Voroshilovgrad, Ukraine.|
|Date of enlistment:||1939|
|Military unit||On November 28, 1943 was lost (shot down in the air battle. Parachuted over the territory occupied by the enemy).|
|Date of the completion of military service:||25th Fighter Aviation Regiment of the Air Force of the Black Sea Fleet.|
|Awards:||Order of the Patriotic War of II degree (1943).|
|Air victories||4 personal victories, 2 victories in the group air battles.
Completed 138 combat sorties (data as of June 30, 1943).
Award sheet for Buigashev, signed on 30 July 1943. Presented for the Order of the Patriotic War, First Class.https://pamyat-naroda.ru/heroes/podvig-chelovek_predstavlenie7968429 Brief, specific statement of personal combat exploits or merits
"Participated in the Patriotic War since August 1942. Has shown himself to be a competent professional and loves his profession. A strong-willed commander. Excellent at piloting the aircraft. Operates the aircraft and its armament competently.
During the period of participation in World War II he took part in 138 combat sorties. Conducted 12 air battles.
Return to Aufkl. Gr. 122 Mar 1943
- * "Redut" was a Soviet Russ-2 Redut radar. Determined direction and range. It did not determine flight altitude.
- * Batumi (Georgia). Coordinates of the city: 41.651108, 41.636267.
- * Kobuleti (Georgia). Coordinates: 41.820574, 41.775281.
- * The source text reads "after the first enemy aircraft has been sighted". The original text reads "after the first detection of an enemy aircraft".
- * "Lieutenant" is so in the source text. In the division combat log it is "Senior Lieutenant".
- * Poti (Georgia). Coordinates: 42.142432, 41.675514.
- * The document says "62nd IAB". It is a "fighter aviation brigade". The 62nd IAB included the 25th Fighter Aviation Regiment.
- * The source misspelled the surname as "Holkeev".
- * The source misspelled the surname as "Bulgashev".
- * "BS" - Soviet machine gun of Berezin design, synchronous. Calibre 12.7 mm.
- * "ShVAK" - Soviet aircraft gun designed by Shpitalny and Vladimirov. Calibre 20 mm.
- * "Senior Lieutenant" - so in the source text. In the regiment's battle log it is "Lieutenant".
- * The document says "IAP". The author of the document made a mistake. Not the 62nd "fighter aviation regiment". Correct: 62nd "iab" - "fighter aviation brigade".
- * The document was spelled correctly - "iab". It is "fighter aviation brigade".
- * Probably a mistake on the part of the author of the document. The flight of Soviet fighters was not for patrolling, but to intercept enemy aircraft.