What an emotional week for Team #99 in Spielberg, Austria. During race week, the team installed a new intake on the race plane to shave off some time and pump up the speed; and made sure the race plane was race-ready after the final assembly.

After leading the time sheet for two out of our three training sessions, we were confident for a very high placing here in Spielberg. Unfortunately, we made a couple of miscues during our Round of 14 flight on Sunday which meant there would be no route to the final 4. The next step for us is to translate our speed into a consistent “race pace” and we will be challenging every race. Sometimes learning is kind of painful but I guess it’s necessary. Thanks so much to the team and all of the support from my partners Cirrus Aircraft, Whelen Engineering (who attended their first race), as well as Hartzell Propeller, and Bose Aviation. You guys are great. Thanks so much.#betterneverquits. Let’s go kill it in Japan!! I’m already chomping at the bit.


Audio excerpt from Michael’s interview:

It was an interesting day, everybody was trying to guess the winds –  and us as well. Trying to figure how to get the start speed right ,and that was the most important thing. I went out there with a solid game plan and then I heard Kirby (Chambliss) fly a 58.4 which I knew was almost the fastest of the day so I had to crank it up and really press really hard to try to beat Kirby and I knew my start speed was slow as went through the gate so I had to try to ‘pedal faster’ to get there and did what I thought was a really really good lap. For whatever reason I couldn’t catch Kirby. The start speed didn’t help and then I’m not sure where else, but it’s one of those times where you think hey, I’m not sure I could have flown any differently and I’m not sure why the time just a little bit slower that I expected it to be So we’ll go back and look, and figure it out. We were fast here all week. We were at top of the time sheets two out of the three free practices. So that’s a great thing, now we just have to turn it around and translate it into race day.

For me I did not think about the wind. I flew the track as I had planned so I had to put the weather out of my mind. It is what it is. Just trying to figure out the starting speed was the most critical thing and we misjudged it by about 7 knots, which is quite a bit.

Whenever we come to Spielberg we always have a smile on our face because it’s a great race track;  it’s fun with changing terrain and landing back here on the front straight-away is amazing. We leave here cold, but with a smile on our face – it’s a great track.

Video provided by Red Bull News Room.