World War One Top Gun Revealed

The story of how a small band of pioneering aircraft designers and engineers invented modern warfare in the four years between 1914 and 1918, turning the aeroplane from an eccentric novelty to the decisive weapon of modern conflict. With exclusive access to ‘The Vintage Aviators’, a unique fleet of replica aircraft owned by director Peter Jackson (‘The Hobbit’, ‘King Kong’), the programme includes a series of dazzling aerial experiments, as present-day test pilots push the meticulously re-created planes to the limit. On both sides of the war, experimental engineers scrabbled for superiority of the skies, with British pioneers like Geoffrey de Havilland competing to out do Anton Fokker, the Dutchman whose planes helped Germany to dominate the sky. These were men working in the dark with a brand-new technology, battling the skepticism of their superiors while the fate of thousands of men rested on their ability to beat the enemy to the next engineering breakthrough.

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