The London-Cape Town speed record-May 1947

Micky Martin Photo © commons.wikimedia.org
Air Marshal Sir Harold Brownlow Morgan "Micky" Martin KCB, DSO & Bar, DFC & Two Bars, AFC (27 February 1918 - 3 November 1988) was an Australian bomber pilot and senior commander in the Royal Air Force (RAF). He took part in Operation Chastise, the RAF's "Dambusters" raid in 1943 and was described by journalist Sir Max Hastings as "one of the three great bomber pilots of the war".

He rose to become a senior officer in the RAF, commanding RAF Germany and later serving as Air Member for Personnel, a member of the Air Council, the RAF's controlling body.

Martin commenced his operational career with No. 455 Squadron RAAF in October 1941 flying the Handley Page Hampden. In February 1942, he captained the first all-Australian crewed bombing sortie against Germany. Martin soon acquired a reputation for low-level flying in order to avoid anti-aircraft fire and fighters. After 13 operations, he and his crew joined No. 50 Squadron RAF. Flying Hampdens, Avro Manchesters, and finally Avro Lancasters. They completed their tour in October 1942 with Martin being awarded the DFC.



Edward Barnes Sismore, DSO, DFC, AFC
Air Commodore Edward Barnes Sismore DSO, DFC & Two Bars, AFC, AE (23 June 1921 - 22 March 2012) was a British air navigator and a fighter pilot during World War II, and a senior Royal Air Force officer in the post-war years. Sismore served as the thirteenth Commandant Royal Observer Corps between 1971 and 1973.

Immediately after being commissioned, in December 1942 he joined No. 105 Squadron, navigating a De Havilland Mosquito alongside pilot Squadron Leader Reginald Reynolds. Over the following 20 months, the pair would see little rest and make some of the most daring targeted raids of the war, which came in retrospect to recognise Sismore as the RAF's finest low-level navigator of World War II.

Together the two broke the speed record for flying from London to Cape Town completing the 6,717 mile journey in a record time of 21 hours, 31 minutes in a Mosquito. They were subsequently awarded the Royal Aero Club's Britannia Trophy for 1947.


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