North Americans Sweep Red Bull
North American pilots swept the top three places in the Red Bull Air Race stop in Kazan, Russia, on Sunday. Kirby Chambliss, of the U.S., flew one of the few penalty-free runs of the Russian race to claim his second first-place finish in a row in a time of 58.378. Canada’s Pete McLeod managed a second-place finish at 59.125 that included a two-second penalty for not flying correctly through one of the pylons. American Mike Goulian was third at 59.650.
"I'm super excited, I was honestly just hoping to get in the Final 4. I didn't think we'd get the top spot,” said Chambliss, who was coming off a win in Budapest three weeks ago, his first in nine years. McLeod was the fastest pilot all weekend in Kazan and would have been the clear winner but for the pylon penalty, which, ironically, he considered his finest moment on Sunday. “I knew I had the penalty and I think the best piece of flying I did all weekend was missing that pylon; I'm still amazed I didn't hit it,” McLeod said. “It helps to be fast enough to take a two second penalty and still be in second place, so it's a great weekend.” It was Goulian’s first podium finish in years and he did it by smooth, conservative flying. “So even though it was conservative, it was what we wanted to do and it played in our favor,” he said. Next race is in Porto, Portugal.