Majestic Muroya Is King Of Kazan
2017 World Champion Yoshihide Muroya made it back-to-back wins so far for the 2019 season with an epic performance in Russia.
Muroya beat Mika Brageot in the Round of 8 to secure his berth in the Final 4 and had to fly first in the last round. He was clean and clinical in his run and set an insurmountable time of 1:03.496.
Matt Hall came closest to knocking Muroya off his perch. He was behind in the splits then gaining on the Japanese pilot, but as he crossed the Finish Gate he was still 0.185s behind, which saw the Australian take second and his first podium of the year.
Current World Champion Martin Sonka followed Muroya into the track, but in his first VTM he went high and was soft in the pull up losing time in his run and he just couldn’t make that loss up in the remaining time he had in the track.
François Le Vot was the third pilot to fly and went into the track with an all-or-nothing attitude. He went all in but collected a two second penalty at Gate 3 and another two at Gate 16. His four seconds of penalties saw him cross the Hamilton Finish Gate more than five seconds behind the winner.
Muroya also controlled the Round of 8
The Final 4 pilots had extremely successful runs in their Round of 8. In the first heat of the second round Brageot’s run was littered with penalties and he gave Muroya an easy run into the Final 4.
Heat 9 saw Sonka up against Ben Murphy. The British pilot flew a brilliant run and set a time 1:03.974. Sonka knew he had be clinical to secure his place in the Final 4, and that’s exactly what he did, knocking 0.567s off Murphy’s time to ensure he progressed.
Le Vot was up against Cristian Bolton and it was the closest heat in the Round of 8. Both pilots wanted to get into the Final 4, but Le Vot was the victor, edging out Bolton by just 0.358s.
Hall flew past Nicolas Ivanoff in the final heat of the Round of 8 when Ivanoff picked up an Over-G penalty at the penultimate gate. The Frenchman was visibly annoyed after he was given the news. Hall once again flew as he always does – smooth and clean – and was 1.126s faster.
The results see Muroya sitting at the top of the World Championship standings on 53 points, with Martin Sonka nine points behind on 44, and Matt Hall is third on 36. With two races of the season remaining there is still everything to fight for and next for the pilots is the race at Lake Balaton, Hungary – a new location – taking place on 13-14 July.