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Goodyear F2G-1 Super Corsair

Aircraft Info Group

Goodyear Aircraft Corp. from a design by Chance Vought
Great Gallery
Great Gallery

Big, robust, and fast, the Goodyear F2G was often referred to as the "Super Corsair" for good reason. Designed and produced by Goodyear rather than Vought, the F2G design mated the Corsair airframe to Pratt & Whitney's huge R-4360 engine rated at 3,000 horsepower. Other changes were a bubble canopy and a taller vertical stabilizer with auxiliary rudder to compensate for the engine's extra torque. Some 418 F2Gs were ordered, but only five F2G-1s and five folding-wing "dash twos" were manufactured.

Ironically, the F2G Corsair made its name in the peacetime world of air racing. Navy pilot Cook Cleland obtained four surplus F2Gs and substantially modified one, clipping six feet off the wingspan. He won the 1947 Thompson Trophy race at 396 mph while two years later the Super Corsairs scored a clean sweep with Cleland, Ron Puckett, and Ben McKillen taking the top three spots. In ten starts over three years the F2Gs scored two wins, two seconds, and a third-place finish.

The Museum's F2G-1 Corsair, Navy Bureau of Aeronautics number 88454, was delivered in 1945. As the first production F2G-1, it spent most of its career at the Navy Air Test Center at Patuxent River, it then went into storage at Norfolk, Virginia, the Corsair with only 246 hours flight time.

In the early 1960s Navy title passed to the Marine Corps Museum at Quantico, Virginia. Following display aboard the aircraft carrier Intrepid during New York's bicentennial observance in 1976, the F2G was barged back to Norfolk. Subsequently, the museum traded the Corsair and a Douglas Skyraider to Doug Champlin in exchange for a Dauntless dive bomber. Champlin kept the Corsair at Enid, Oklahoma, until he opened his museum in Mesa, Arizona, in 1981, when former Thompson Trophy racer Ron Puckett flew the F2G to Falcon Field. Subsequently the rare Corsair came to Seattle with the rest of the Champlin collection in 2003.