News & Multimedia

Kirby is King in Kazan: American Wins Russian Debut

The USA’s Kirby Chambliss is back – back-to-back, in fact. Just three weeks after winning his first race in nine years at the Budapest stop of the Red Bull Air Race, the two-time titleholder triumphed again on Sunday, at the first World Championship stop ever held in Russia. In a North American sweep, Pete McLeod of Canada finished second, while the USA’s Michael Goulian was third.

Weather that changed from glorious to gloomy didn’t deter 90,000 spectators from thrilling to the aerial action over the weekend, but the conditions seemed to have a profound effect on the race results, throwing the World Championship wide open with only three stops to go. In a shocker, favorites including Yoshihide Muroya of Japan, Martin Šonka of the Czech Republic and reigning World Champion Matthias Dolderer of Germany fell to the wayside early by losing their head-to-heads in the rainy Round of 14.

Going first in the Final 4, Chambliss served up a result of 58.378, a time he later admitted he didn't think would stand against McLeod, who set a faster track record in Qualifying. But a two-second penalty left the Canadian 0.747 behind, and neither Goulian nor the Czech Republic’s Petr Kopfstein could do better. It was the third podium of 2017 for McLeod and the first in eight years for an ecstatic Goulian.

Every pilot was keen to earn the first World Championship points ever to be awarded in Russia, and by taking the lion’s share, Chambliss boosted himself to the top of the overall standings for the first time since 2006 – a year when he went on to clinch the World Championship. The American’s 40 points put him just one point ahead of Muroya and Šonka, who each have 39, while the remarkably consistent McLeod is also poised to strike with 38. The final three races of the year will be utterly unpredictable.

“Clean flying will take you up there, and that’s what we’re trying to do – the whole team is helping me with the lines and the strategy and the raceplane,” said Chambliss, who is the only pilot in the lineup to have been part of the Red Bull Air Race ever since its origins in 2003. “The first part of year we struggled, but I look at it one race at a time, and if we keep winning races we’ll win the Championship. It’s been awesome in Russia.”

The Red Bull Air Race will next make a highly anticipated return to scenic Porto, Portugal for the sixth stop of the season on 2-3 September 2017.

Results Master Class Kazan 2017: 
1. Kirby Chambliss (USA), 2. Pete McLeod (CAN), 3. Michael Goulian (USA), 4. Petr Kopfstein (CZE), 5. Juan Velarde (ESP), 6. Matt Hall (AUS), 7. François Le Vot (FRA), 8. Cristian Bolton (CHI), 9. Martin Šonka (CZE), 10. Matthias Dolderer (GER), 11. Nicolas Ivanoff (FRA), 12. Mikaël Brageot (FRA), 13. Yoshihide Muroya (JPN), 14. Peter Podlunšek (SLO)

World Championship standings after five races: 1. Kirby Chambliss (USA) 40 points, 2. Yoshihide Muroya (JPN) 39 points, 3. Martin Šonka (CZE) 39 pts, 4. Pete McLeod (CAN) 38 pts, 5. Petr Kopfstein (CZE) 30 pts, 6. Matthias Dolderer (GER) 24 pts, 7. Michael Goulian (USA) 23 pts, 8. Juan Velarde (ESP) 21 pts, 9. Matt Hall (AUS) 16 pts, 10. Nicolas Ivanoff (FRA) 14 pts, 11. Peter Podlunšek (SLO) 12 pts, 12. Mikaël Brageot (FRA) 9 pts, 13. François Le Vot (FRA) 8 pts, 14. Cristian Bolton (CHI) 7 pts

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Kirby Chambliss
 
Kirby is King in Kazan: American Wins Russian Debut
The USA’s Kirby Chambliss is back – back-to-back, in fact. Just three weeks after winning his first race in nine years at the Budapest stop of the Red Bull Air Race, the two-time titleholder triumphed again on Sunday, at the first World Championship stop ever held in Russia. In a North American sweep, Pete McLeod of Canada finished second, while the USA’s Michael Goulian was third.
Read More
Related Media
Eddie Rickenbacker
 
Former IMS Owner Rickenbacker Achieved Stardom as America's First Aerial Ace
Eddie Rickenbacker is known to many fans of motor racing and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as a prominent race driver in the 1910s and the leader of the ownership group of IMS from 1927 through 1945.
Read More
Ray Harroun
 
IMS First Took Flight in Public Consciousness Through Aviation
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway added altitude to its status as the “Racing Capital of the World” in 2016 when the inaugural Red Bull Air Race World Championship event took place on a course over the infield of the IMS oval.
Read More
Red Bull Air Race
 
IMS Celebrates National Aviation Day as Preparation Continues for Red Bull Air Race
To celebrate National Aviation Day, which takes place TODAY! (Aug. 19), we asked IMS staffers to submit their thoughts on year 1 of the Air Race and why they’re excited for this Fall’s upcoming competition. Happy reading!
Read More
Sebastien Bourdais
 
Bourdais Cleared To Resume Racing Activities
Verizon IndyCar Series driver Sebastien Bourdais has been cleared to resume driving by Dr. Geoffrey Billows, INDYCAR medical director, following his recovery from injuries sustained in a crash during Indianapolis 500 qualifications.
Read More
Borg-Warner Trophy
 
VICE Video Featuring 2017 Indianapolis 500 in Five-Part Series on GO90
VICE Video, part of the influential and popular VICE Media digital network, is featuring the spectacle, grandeur and tradition of the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil from May 2017 in a five-part online series.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 2,712
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact IMS Sales Department at (317) 492-8739 or email at hospitalitysales@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
It's Pole day on @CrownRoyal Armed Forces Weekend & we can't wait to see you! Check out details on the day: https://t.co/yKQ6Db3YRK
May 21