Just For The Helluva It, Let’s Talk About the F8F Bearcat

by Ralph J. Ferrusi

Of course I was aware of the F8F Bearcat, but never really formed any kind of attachment with it, as I did, for instance, with the Corsair, or Hellcat. I recall it as a small(ish) fighter plane with a HUGE radial engine, swinging a big four-bladed prop, necessitating tall—and wide-spaced—landing gear, sort of like a U. S. Navy FW-190. I do recall it was fast, duking it out in post World War II air races (Reno???) with souped up P-51 Mustangs.