Four aim to go out on a high

Courtesy of Red Bull Air Race Media

Kirby Chambliss of the United States performs during race day at the sixth round of the Red Bull Air Race World Championship in Porto, Portugal on September 3, 2017. –
Photographer Credit:
Predrag Vuckovic/Red Bull Content Pool

Quartet in contention for Red Bull Air Race crown at thrilling season finale.

Four pilots will battle it out in a nail-biting finale to the 2017 Red Bull Air Race, with the potential for a new champion to be crowned.

Three of the quartet: Martin Šonka, Yoshihide Muroya and Pete McLeod have never won the championship of the skies before, while it is 11 years since the oldest of the title protagonists Kirby Chambliss, now 57, won the second of his titles.

Martin Sonka of the Czech Republic performs during race day at the seventh round of the Red Bull Air Race World Championship at Lausitzring, Germany on September 17, 2017. –
Photographer Credit:
Sebastian Marko/Red Bull Content Pool

Just 11 points separate the top four going into the season finale at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with Czech aviator Šonka, who won the rounds in Abu Dhabi and Porto, leading the standings on 63 points.

Narrowly behind by four points but fresh from winning the last round at the Lausitzring – adding to victories in San Diego and Chiba this season – is Japan’s Muroya.

In third spot currently but without a win from this year’s seven rounds to date is the youngest of the title challengers in Canadian Pete McLeod, aged 33, and currently with a points tally of 56.

Pete McLeod flies his aerobatic airplane through the smokey skies caused by summer forrest fires in British Columbia, Canada on August 8, 2017. –
Photographer Credit:
Scott Serfas / Red Bull Content Pool

Chambliss, enjoying an Indian summer in the sport after taking the spoils in both Budapest and Kazan, currently has the lowest points tally of those vying for title glory on 52.

American crowds at Indianapolis saw Matthias Dolderer crowned world champion, the German sewing up the title with room to spare, in contrast to the twists and turns of the current campaign.

As the current points leader, Šonka is the marginal favourite as they battle it out for overall glory in the skies above at speeds of up to 370kph and pulling 10 Gs of force.

Tickets are still available for the Red Bull Air Race climax. For all the latest news, information and tickets, visit www.redbullairrace.com.

Yoshihide Muroya of Japan performs during practice day at the seventh round of the Red Bull Air Race World Championship at Lausitzring, Germany on September 15, 2017. –
Photographer Credit:
Sebastian Marko/Red Bull Content Pool

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