The Annual Red Bull Air Race launches pilots into another realm.
Created in 2003, the Red Bull Air Race Championship pushes racing to extremes not found anywhere else. The series visits some of the most picturesque cities and coastal areas worldwide, with the 2019 season having kicked off in February in Dubai. The eight-round schedule will also race above the Kazanka River in Russia, Lake Balaton in Hungary, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and Europe before finishing the season in Saudi Arabia.
Nicholas Ivanoff, who races for Team Hamilton (the series’s official timekeeper), is one of the longest-standing pilots in the series. A member of the French Aerobatics Team since 1997 (think Canada’s Snowbirds or the U.S. Navy Blue Angels), he joined the series in 2005, garnering five total wins and finishing top-five in the championship three times.
Canadian Pete McLeod took a much different route into the series, flying bush planes atop his father’s lap at just three years old around Red Lake, Ontario. By 16, McLeod obtained his private licence before pushing his limits in classical aerobatic training. He is the youngest pilot to compete in the Red Bull series, joining at the age of 25, and becoming its youngest-ever winner just five years later in Las Vegas. Collecting seven total podiums and third in the standings in 2017, the Hamilton-sponsored pilot races under his own banner on Team McLeod, and is constantly searching for ways to gain a competitive edge.