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January 1943, supplies for the encircled German 6th Army were flown to the Pitomnik airfield. To close this channel, Rokossovsky ordered the 91st Tank Brigade to seize the airfield. The 344th Tank Battalion was sent against the Bezymyannogo Hill and the Novaya Nadezhda Farm, both located on the outskirts of the airfield near Stalingrad. During five hours of intense fighting on January 21, 1943, Naumov and his crew destroyed 5 tanks, 24 armored vehicles, 19 artillery pieces and mortars, 15 machine gun nests, 5 bunkers, and took out up to a hundred German soldiers.