Returning for the ninth year as the season opening round in 2016, Abu Dhabi takes its Red Bull Air Race hosting to new heights. The competition this year is the hottest in history with a fresh crop of new talent and seasoned racers hungry for the win! Qualifying on Friday 11 and Race Day Saturday 12 March! Be with us for the season start!
Le Vot has completed his 2 runs for FP3 and Velarde is in the track right now. Le Vot slower than yesterday's session and has picked up a DQ in Run 1, but managed to lay down a time of 1:02.992 in Run 2. Off the fastest pace by a big margin... but no penalties.
Velarde over-Gs in his first run so it's an automatic DNF for the Spaniard, who came second in FP2 yesterday. He's got to keep it under wraps if he wants to record a good time for Qualifying later this afternoon.
Gate 6 causing Chambliss another headache in Run 1, as he picks up +2s for incorrect level flying. Without the penalty he's still flying around 59s, that's over 2s slower than the fastest pilots here so far this week. Run 2 is clean and smoother for Chambliss, and there's a review at Gate 12 where he picks up +2s again for incorrect level flying.
A first clean run from Goulian, he's still got some time to find in the track but it looks like he's finding his racing lines out there today. Run 2 looking good and the splits are in the green but he fails to go wings level through Gate 5 and it's +2s on the clock for the American pilot. Run 1 remains his fastest so it goes on the timesheets, putting him at the top for now:
McLeod a little less full throttle today and it's a good start but Gate 6 on the back stretch is causing him issues yet again, still not finding his perfect line. He picks up +2s and another +2s at Gate 12 on the return.
Run 2 much cleaner and he's scrubbed 1.1s off the first splits, but Gate 12 is causing problems again for the Canadian and it's another +2s on the clock. With the penalty he's 0.428 off Goulian's pace and moves into second overall.
Lamb's FP3 session is over quickly, a DNF for over-G will be his only result in this last run before Qualifying. The British pilot will be frustrated, having lost his chance to improve on his FP1 fastest time of 56.416
Germany's Dolderer looking surprisingly slow out there today... the German pilot clocked in at 56.440 in Training 1 but has just finished Run 1 with 1:00.553
Run 2 is 0.010s faster in the first split but Gate 5 on the long back stretch has caught him out and he picks up +2s for incorrect level flying. Another penalty at Gate 12 means his Run 1 time sticks and Goulian retains the top spot on today's FP3 timesheets.
Arch looking fast if not aggressive in his first run out in Free Practice 3. He picks up +1s at the Start Gate for exceeding maximum speed limit but pushes through. He's the first pilot today to go sub-1 minute despite the penalty and takes the top spot from Goulian with 59.049
Wind conditions a little faster and more westerly than yesterday, it could be throwing the pilots off their lines slightly.
Arch looking confident in Run 2 but over-Gs again and it's a DNF result. His Run 1 time stands.
Out of the Start Gate the splits are solidly in the green... he's gained over 1.5s in the second split but loses time as he heads back into the track on the return. The splits stay green and Hall leads the field by a clear margin as he grabs 57.822, 1.227s faster than Arch.
Run 2 and he's keeping cool, looking even faster. Consistent, confident, calm. He loses time through Gate 7, 8 and 9 but it's still sub-58, just not as fast as Run 1.