Using borrowed equipment, pilot conquers Russian airspace

June 18, 2019

 

They say you never forget your first time.

 

But as Kenny Chiang returned to the site of his maiden career Red Bull Air Race win in Kazan, his thoughts were in a state of disarray.

 

Having lost his luggage and equipment, Chiang's hopes of a repeat success were off to a shaky start, with the Hong Kong pilot's predicament compounded by series of sub-par performances in the Free Practices. 

 

With this year set to mark its 14th and final season, Kazan was one of three remaining chances to score pieces of silverware and pay tribute to the iconic Red Bull Air Race.  

 

 

Luckily, Chiang found himself in good company - it took a Briton, a Japanese and a German to supply him with the equipment he needed to complete the race. 

 

“Kazan and Russia have always been very special to me. I had my first win here, and the people have always been very supportive," said Chiang. 

 

"Thankfully, Ben Murphy and Yoshi Muroya and Matthias Dolderer loaned me some race gear, so I’m actually wearing Yoshi’s shoes, and this morning Ben loaned me his gloves. And that makes a difference."

 

Posting a time of 1:07.365, the 29-year-old triumphed against the odds to clinch first-place by the finest of margins, with half a second separating him from second-placed Sammy Mason. 

 

"This week has just been crawling from the back foot, so to pull one out of the bag makes this my best race win of all." he added.  

 

 

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