Weather conditions were perfect for Red Bull Air Race’s season opener in Abu Dhabi, but the Master Class pilots brought the heat to the Arabian Gulf. All 14 teams battled it out in 2019’s first Qualifying session, with the top 4 pilots posting times within a half second of one another. The theme has been set for the season: fierce competition and aggressive strategies.

“My strategy in Qualifying is to just go fast, twice. Some people try to go safe on the first track run and then go for it on the second one. But I just try to go out there and better my own time on both runs and just lay it down.” Goulian remarks after cinching third place, awarding Team 99’s first World Championship point of the season.

“Tomorrow is anybody’s race: there are so many fast guys and the race is so very tight that you can’t make a mistake. And with the new G rule, it’s very easy to make a one second mistake.”

Read up about 2019’s Rule Book updates here, including the new points system and the over-G rule:

The Master Class pilots begin their first race of the 2019 season with the Round of 14, which starts at 14:00 local time [10:00UTC and 5:00 Eastern Standard Time] and you can watch it live HERE.

Abu Dhabi 2019 Master Class Qualifying Results


Tomorrow’s Round of 14 matchups:

Heat 1 – Matthias Dolderer vs. Mika Brageot

Heat 2 – Cristian Bolton vs. Martin Sonka

Heat 3 – Francois LeVot vs. Juan Velarde

Heat 4 – Petr Kopfstein vs. Michael Goulian

Heat 5 – Matt Hall vs. Ben Murphy

Heat 6 – Kirby Chambliss vs. Pete McLeod

Heat 7 – Nicolas Ivanoff vs. Yoshihide Muroya


Keep up with the series here:

Content and images courtesy of Red Bull Content Pool.

Red Bull Air Race 2018 Calendar
8-9 February | Abu Dhabi, UAE
TBA | Europe*
15-16 June | Kazan, Russia
13-14 July | Budapest, Hungary
TBA | Asia*
7-8 September | Chiba, Japan
19-20 October | Indianapolis, USA
8-9 November | Saudi Arabia

*Europe and Asia races are to be announced