Could Hall swap back to the MXS?
At the end of the 2016 season Matt Hall had to retire early from the final race due to his much-loved MXS-R developing a serviceability issue, meaning he was unable to compete.
For a long time it was thought that the MXS-R would never fly again, so Hall and his team had to make a hard choice to continue to compete in the Red Bull Air Race. Hall purchased a brand new Edge 540 V3 for the 2017 season and now has the raceplane set up exactly as he wants.
With the possibility of a two-plane team, how does Hall feel about bringing back his MX? "There's no immediate plan, because we're enjoying the Edge," said Hall, "but we are looking to get it painted in the Organics colours so if we need it, we can use it."
Even though Hall doesn't see it as a drop-in replacement, it is now a vital tool in his armoury. "Having the MX back is the next step up as a professional racing team. We've now got a spare that we can bring straight in, and it's dialled in," he explained.
Matt Hall asking the question everyone wants to know...
The MX and Edge are very different machines to fly, and when Hall first swapped to the Edge he had to ignore nine years of muscle memory and 'relearn' how to fly in the new plane. But with nearly two seasons in the Edge under his belt, he feels he's got exactly what he wants. "The two planes are getting similar, I've turned the Edge a bit more like an MX, because that's what I like in terms of feel," he said. "But when I get back in the MX it's definitely not like the Edge and I like the Edge better, but that means we can tune the MX to bring it more in line. It's certainly a valuable item for the team," he added.
Hall's Edge 540 V3 that he's flown since race two of 2017 ©Armin Walcher/RBAR
Due To Matt Hall Racing being based in Australia, Hall is often without his Edge for large parts of the season as it's being ferried to other race locations, but now with an airworthy MX at home, it gives him more opportunities to be competitive. "Having two raceplanes with winglets and all the mods makes it so much better for training and testing. We can use the MX to test new components, we can train in it and I'm able to stay G-fit all whilst the other plane is heading to race locations."