Archive for October 3, 2018

Red Bull Air Race World Championship

Saturday, October 6 — Sunday, Octobert 7, 2018

Indianapolis Motor Speedway


• Fourteen pilots in the elite Master Class, eight in the Challenger Class.

• Pilots hail from North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and Africa.

• American pilots: Michael Goulian and Kirby Chambliss (Master Class), Kevin Coleman (Challenger Class).


• 3 laps through a course over the center of the IMS infield marked by 82-foot-tall inflatable gales called Air Pylons.

• First 2 laps consist of seven gates each. The final lap consists of five gates, for a total of 19 gates in each race.

• Pilots take off and land from a Hangar Area located in the IMS infield, as IMS becomes an FAA-licensed airfield during this event.


• Pilots compete one at a time on the course, against the clock.

• A Vertical Turn Maneuver (VTM) is a highlight of the first two laps, as pilots dramatically climb and dive back into the course at the end of each of the first two laps.

• Pilots are matched up for the initial Master Class Round of 14 for the race based on their times in qualifying. Fastest qualifier against slowest, No. 2 vs. No. 13, etc.

• The seven winners of the initial Round of 14 – and the quickest loser – advance to the Round of 8. The field is reseeded by times in the Round of 14 for matchups to reduce the field to the Final 4. The slowest of the Final 4 qualifiers flies first, with the quickest flying last. The quickest pilot in the Final 4 is the event winner.

• Pilots are assessed time penalties for various infractions, such as excessive entry speed into the course, excessive G forces during the Vertical Turn Maneuver, non-level flying through gates, hitting an Air Pylon, insufficient smoke trailing from the plane, etc.


• Single-engine, fixed-wing aircraft. Master Class planes exceed 200 mph and endure forces of 10 G’s during competition while flying only 50-60 feet off the ground.

• All Master Class planes use standard Lycoming Thunderbolt AEIO-540-EXP engines and the Hartzell 3-bladed 7690 structural composite propeller.

• The Edge 540 plane uses steel tube frame construction, while the MXS-R is constructed entirely of carbon fiber.

• All planes include state-of-the-art safety equipment, such as seat harnesses, fire extinguishers, flotation devices (used in events over water) and more. Every plane undergoes extensive technical and safety inspection by individual teams and series officials before each flight.


• Martin Sonka of the Czech Republic leads the Master Class standings, 64-58, over Matt Hall of Australia. Michael Goulian of the United States is third at 55 points.

• Sonka will attempt at IMS to become the first pilot in series history to win four consecutive races. He has won three straight events this summer, at Budapest, Hungary; Kazan, Russia; and Wiener Neustadt, Austria.

• Kenny Chiang of Hong Kong and Luke Czepiela are tied atop the Challenger Class standings with 26 points. Kevin Coleman of the United States is tied for sixth with 16 points.

• The Indianapolis race is the seventh of eight events on the 2018 schedule. The final race is Nov. 17-18 at Texas Motor Speedway.

• The Red Bull Air Race World Championship officially launched in 2003. Yoshihide Muroya of Japan is the defending Master Class champion; Florian Berger of Germany is the two-time defending Challenger Class champion. Two Americans have won the Master Class title – Kirby Chambliss (2004, 2006) and Mike Mangold (2005, 2007).


Global electronic music superstar Kaskade will perform Saturday at IMS, with opening acts Mielo and Hugh Jeffner. The show starts at 5:30 p.m. near the Red Bull Air Race Hangar Area. Visit to purchase tickets.

A variety of World of Red Bull athletes will demonstrate their skills throughout the event weekend, both in the air and on the ground. Performers include Geoff Aaron (motorcycle trials riding), Aaron Colton (motorcycle street freestyle riding), Robbie Maddison (freestyle motocross with the SCSUNLIMITED team), Luke Aikins and Miles Daisher (Red Bull Air Force Skydive Team), Aaron Fitzgerald (The Flying Bulls aerobatic helicopter), Jim Peitz (aerobatic airplane) and Pal Takats (paragliding).

• The IMS Kids Zone will be open during the event, with a variety of fun activities for young fans.


— Saturday, Oct. 6 —

Public Gates Open — 10pm-5:30pm

Challenger Class Practice — 11:15am-12:23pm

Master Class Practice — 1:10pm-2:18pm

Challenger Class Qualifying — 2:45-3:28pm

Master Class Qualifying — 4:05pm-5:24pm

Sunday, Oct. 7 —

Public Gates Open — 10am-5pm

Pilots Parade, Autograph Session — 11:05am-11:35am

Challenger Class Race — 11:45am-12:28pm

Master Class Round of 14 — 1:06pm-1:54pm

Master Class Round of 8 — 3:05pm-3:31pm

Master Class Final 4 — 3:37pm-3:48pm


 • Saturday, Oct. 6 – General admission, $20.

Sunday, Oct. 7 – Reserved seats $50-$70, increasing to $55-$75 on Race Weekend. General admission $35, increasing to $40 on Race Weekend.

• All fans 15 and younger receive free general admission both days when accompanied by an adult general admission ticket holder. All fans must have a ticket for reserved seats.

Two-day reserved and general admission tickets are available. Hangar Passes also are available, bringing fans even closer to the action and the state-of-the-art race planes.

• Visit to buy tickets or for more information.