Muroya Out In Balaton As Sonka Flies Quickest
Yoshihide Muroya is walking away from Lake Balaton collecting just two World Championship points, leaving Matt Hall and Martin Sonka the chance to overtake the current leader in the World Championship standings. Here’s how the Round of 14 went down…
McLeod vs Ivanoff
Pete McLeod flew first in the Round of 14 and set a time of 59.413s, which included a one second penalty for an over-G. It was a respectable time, but Nicolas Ivanoff was so much quicker and his split times were green, but he was losing energy as his run progressed. Then at the penultimate gate, the French pilot hit the 11G limit, collecting a one second penalty – too much time to make up too late in the game – sending McLeod into the Round of 8.
Let Vot vs Murphy
Le Vot looked to be rushing through the track as he turned early at Gate 4, collecting two seconds' worth of penalties. Le Vot then repeated the very same mistake at Gate 12, giving him a final time of 1:03.804. Murphy's gameplan from here looked to be simple – fly clean. The Brit did just that, crossing the Hamilton Finish Gate error-free and 3.897s faster than Le Vot, securing a Round of 8 spot for the Brit.
Muroya vs Hall
Muroya flew cleanly, but his tactics appeared to have been prepared with blustier wind conditions in mind. Without the advantage of wind helping him Muroya’s time was slow and he set a 1:01.016. Hall flew a beautiful run without worrying about the pressure. The Australian pushed Muroya out of Race Day as the Japanese pilot lacked the pace to go through as the fastest loser – a result that has set the World Championship wide open!
Chambliss vs Brageot
Kirby Chambliss, the most experienced pilot in the series, was calm in the track – smooth and precise, he set a solid time of 1:00.223, but it looked like it wasn’t going to be quick enough to win the heat. Brageot was flying well and was 1.046s ahead at the final split time, but an over-G at Gate 13 and a lack of pace saw Brageot lose all that advantage, and finish 0.223s behind the American.
Kopfstein vs Goulian
Petr Kopfstein also made the choice to make sure he flew error-free and set a time that would put the pressure on Goulian. He crossed the Finish Gate in 1:00.307. Goulian set similar split times to Kopfstein, but built momentum through his run. At the third split, Goulian had gained almost half a second on his rival, and went through to the Round of 8 comfortably.
Bolton vs Velarde
Bolton set a 59.982s which commentator Paul Bonhomme described as a “very respectable time, and something Juan Velarde will have the think about.” Velarde was calm in his run, although in the red at the first split, but built his pace and making sure he didn’t lose his plane’s energy. Velarde stopped the clock at 59.326s, 0.656s faster than Bolton, putting the Spanish pilot through. But Bolton had done enough to make sure he progressed as the Fastest Loser.
Dolderer vs Sonka
Dolderer was looking great in the track, flying smoothly and cleanly, and looked to be putting down a super competitive run. But it was at Gate 13 where it all went wrong for the German pilot. He misjudged his setup turn, and to avoid hitting a pylon flew through the pylons at the incorrect level, adding an Over-G as he pulled up and a total of three seconds to his net time. This ultimately saw him come in at 1:02.555. Despite this, Sonka didn’t hold back and went all-out in his run. Flying quick and clean, he finished 3.379s faster than Dolderer and set the quickest time of the day so far!
The Round of 8 begins at 15:00 local time. Watch it live right here.