Fort Worth 2018: Round of 14 preview

This is it, time for the pilots to put it all out there

McLeod will fly first today

It's the final Race Day of 2018 and at the end of today one of three pilots will be the new World Champion. But they've got 11 other pilots trying to win. Here's how the first round lines up...

Heat 1
Pete McLeod vs Matt Hall
These two have faced each other four times before in the knockout stages and it's two apiece. And although McLeod said it's never fun being the 'wind dummy' because of flying first, he has nothing to lose, so can be relaxed in the track. Hall on the other hand has a chance to become World Champion today, so will be feeling the pressure, but if there's one pilot that can handle pressure, it's Hall.

Heat 2
Mika Brageot vs Kirby Chambliss
This will be the first time this season that these two have gone head to head. In 2017 Chambliss won twice against Brageot, but he's a completely different pilot this year. Chambliss has been setting the quicker times at his home track and will be favourite to go through, but Brageot has upset the old guard before...

Heat 3
Michael Goulian vs Cristian Bolton
Goulian has beaten Bolton four times in the head to heads, with Bolton never beating the American. However there is a lot of pressure on Goulian today, he's in the top spot and wants to be Champion. He's also had trouble with his raceplane this weekend. Bolton on the other hand has had plenty of mods made to his plane and it seems to be paying off. Bolton has been ahead of Goulian in every timesheet. Could this be a spoiler?

Heat 4
Ben Murphy vs François Le Vot
These two have never flown against each other on Race Day. Murphy has not been settled in the Texas track, it seems as if his Final 4 appearance in Indianapolis has unsettled the trajectory he was on. Le Vot was given a DNF in FP1 for exceeding the G-limit, but he has recovered quickly to set some quick times and looks good in the track. This will be a closely fought battle.

Heat 5
Petr Kopfstein vs Yoshihide Muroya
Both of these two need to get something out of this season. Kopfstein has lots of works planned to his raceplane, including a new engine, but he's going to push today to try and finish on a high. Muroya, the outgoing World Champion, would love to get something today. He's enjoying this round because it reminds him of last year when he became Champion, but the pressure is on someone else this time.

Heat 6
Nicolas Ivanoff vs Martin Sonka
After his podium in Indianapolis, Ivanoff has struggled here in Fort Worth. But the Frenchman won here in 2014 and if anyone can turn it on when they need to it's Ivanoff. And he's up against a focused Sonka, who if wins here today, will be the World Champion. Out of the three pilots trying to be crowned here, Sonka seems the calmest, and after the heartbreak of losing the Championship in the final run of last year, he won't want to let that slip again.

Heat 7
Juan Velarde vs Matthias Dolderer
Velarde went from top to bottom over the last two days. He was top in FP2 and then bottom in Qualifying. He'll try to forget the mistakes he made yesterday, but with the weather changing how the track will need to be flown, it could work in Velarde's favour as he always starts strong. Dolderer blew everyone away in Qualifying yesterday and always seems to enjoy the speedway tracks. For this heat, it all depends on which version of the pilot turns up.

The final Round of 14 begins at 13:00 local time. Catch all the action HERE.

Fort Worth 2018 Master Class Round of 14 startlist

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