Martin Sonka showed today that the World Championship is still wide open by topping Free Practice 1 and Juan Velarde showed this could be anyone's weekend by setting the fastest time of the day in FP2.
The first session at the final round of the 2018 season saw Sonka take the top spot with a time of 51.249s. Sonka is five points off the lead and looking to take his first career title. And with this time, he'll be confident going into tomorrow's Qualifying.
Closest to Sonka in FP1 was Velarde, who was just 0.224s behind the Czech pilot and in third was Petr Kopfstein, who was 0.495s off the lead. Brageot was fourth with Cristian Bolton an impressive fifth, just 0.768s off the top – making four of the top five pilots graduates of the Challenger Class.
Championship leader Michael Goulian was sixth with a time of 52.110s, but damaged his raceplane and was unable to compete in in FP2.
Matt Hall, the third pilot in the hunt for the World Championship, had an electrical failure in FP1 and due to that disruption was unable to settle in the track. He found himself down in ninth.
2017 World Champion Yoshihide Muroya cricked his neck in the VTM in FP1 and was unable to put in a time he could be pleased with. He has seen the physiotherapist and was passed fit to fly in FP2, but was still unhappy with his time.
In the later session of day one, Juan Velarde set the fastest time of the day with a 50.872s run. Hall had managed to put his demons behind him and was the only other pilot to break the sub-51s mark. He was just 0.121s behind Velarde.
Mathias Dolderer was in third and Sonka in fourth, Bolton was fifth again, showing that his recent modifications seem to be working for him.
After exceeding the G-limit and receiving a DNF in FP1, François Le Vot impressed in FP2 and finished sixth on the timesheet.
It was a tough day in this tight, technical track with 19 pylon hits. The pilot that flies clean will do well in tomorrow's Qualifying.
You can follow all the action on tomorrow's Qualifying right HERE.
Fort Worth 2018 Master Class FP1 results
Fort Worth 2018 Master Class FP2 results