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Zinoviy Kolobanov [Decal included]
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The video is about the Battle of Krasnogvardeysk and Lieutenant Zinoviy Kolobanov, whose platoon
ambushed and destroyed over 40 German tanks and stopped German offensive on Leningrad.


Zinoviy Grigorevich Kolobanov ( Зиновий Григoрьевич Колобaнов ) was born on 25th December, 1910, in the village of Arefino. After graduating from college in 1933, he was drafted into the Red Army. He graduated from an armoured forces institute in 1936 as a straight-A student with the rank of Lieutenant, and requested to be stationed in Leningrad. In 1938, he would become commander of his own tank company, situated at the Karelian strait, just 5 days before the Winter War. For his participation in the Winter War, especially at the breakthrough of the Mannerheim Line, Kolobanov received the award ‘Hero of the Soviet Union’, and was promoted to the rank of captain. However, it was during the war on the Eastern Front that he would be immortalized as one of the USSR’s most recognized tank aces.

KV-1E, available in the game via the starter pack &
Kolobanov's authentic camouflage, made by Joker

His real claim to fame would occur during the battle at Krasnogvardeysk, near Leningrad (now Gatchina and St Petersburg, respectively). There were three roads leading to the village, each converging at a choke point encompassed by a swamp. Kolobanov knew that three German medium Panzer III divisions were advancing on the area, and he decided to set up an ambush in the swamp choke point. Including him, there were 5 KV-1 tanks, each one carrying nearly double the normal ammunition than it usually would.

As the German tank column approached their positions, Kolobanov’s gunner, Andrei Usov, shot the leading tank, which exploded immediately. Thinking that it had stepped on a landmine, the entire column stopped. Usov quickly destroyed another tank in the same manner, and the other KV-1 followed suit, each firing in slight intervals so as not to give away their true number. Though by now the Germans realized they were under attack, they could only see the front plate of Kolobanov’s tank. In an attempt to retreat, the Germans moved into soft mud, which their tracks couldn’t handle, and many became stuck. This made them easy targets for the KV-1s. By the end of the half-hour battle, there were a total of 43 smoking wrecks, which used to be Panzer III’s. It is worth noting that after the battle, 156 hits were counted on Kolobanov’s tank, none of which had penetrated through the thick armour. This was due to the German tanks being equipped with only a 37mm cannon, which proved inferior to the KV-1’s frontal armour.

Even though he was already awarded with being a ‘Hero of the Soviet Union’, he was also granted the ‘Order of the Red Banner’. His gunner, Usov, received the honour of the ‘Order of Lenin’. He was convicted twice for mild treason. Once, during the Winter War, when he was caught “fraternizing with the enemy”, and another when he let one of his subordinates escape to the British zone of occupied Germany. He retired from the army in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, where he worked in the Minsk Auto Works. Two monuments were built in dedication to him, one in the village where his ambush was stationed, and one in Minsk.

Author: Sergej "NuclearFoot" Hrustić


With an upcoming update, we will add
Zinoviy's Kolobanov's tank number:

Decal made by Branislav 'InkaL' Mirkov

What do you think about the KV-1E? Have you met it in a battle?
Is it's armour really so good? You can purchase it via the starter pack!

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