In an attempt to beat the Rasputitsa, a mass of Soviet Forces surged forward across the whole Soviet front line. Any hope that OKH might have had that the reserves of Soviet manpower had been exhausted following the Winter Offensive, were soon to be dashed.
For the first time, sizeable numbers of Lend-lease trucks equipment and machine tools had been reaching the Soviet Union, which had the effect of extending the reach and endurance of formations once battle was joined.
Nonetheless, XIV Motorised Korps felt confident, as it had rebuilt over winter and taken delivery of the new Panzer Vs and VIs¹, and Hummels, mounting 15cm guns on a composite PzIII/IV chassis¹.
The first blow fell on 296 Infantry Division astride the VORONEZH – KURSK road with 69th Army putting in a full set-piece attack of 107, 111, and 183 Rifle Divisions backed by 270 Guards Rifle Division and 1st Tank Army (6Tk, 31 Tk and 3 Mech Corps).
The attack broke in to the divisional main defensive line (MDL) of 296 Infantry Division, but then faltered as the reserve line held.
The 296 Infantry Division reserve line is holding for now
But 107 Rifle Division follow-on attacks on the reserve line are repulsed with heavy Soviet losses
After Heavy Fighting – The MDL is about to break but no more Soviet Reserves are immediately available
… to be continued.
- My Hummel from syborg 3d printing is a late model, but I’m not picky.
Updated April 2022 to amend unit designations.