Out of reach?

Posted on: 2nd Jun 2009

Lying in 4th place 9 points behind the leader and 6 points behind 3rd is not where we want to be right now. True, it’s the best start we’ve had so far but, in previous seasons, we clearly had an uncompetitive machine. Not so this year. Given that the third dimension makes the race line invisible, it’s simply not possible to say who has the fastest machine. The fact is, the lightened MXS may not be the quickest but it is competitive so now it’s down to the pilot. With many teams capable of the podium, the success we crave will only be possible through consistent, aggressive flying and no mistakes anywhere. Nicolas Ivanoff is the best illustration of this. Like I’ve always said, he’s generally been the right guy in the wrong machine. The Edge 540 has very predictable handling qualities so a good pilot can feel very comfortable very quickly. Despite his lack of type experience, Nicolas obviously feels at home already. I don’t think his Edge is as fast as several others. He’s got great talent and he’s flying great lines, fullstop. Someone in the paddock suggested that perhaps the way to get really good at air racing is to ‘do a Nicolas’ .... spend a few seasons grappling with a machine cursed with lousy handling qualities ... then jump into an Edge. I really had my sights set on winning this year so the biggest problem I have now is trying to recover from this position with only 4 races to go. That means beating the leader by more than 2 points in each of the remaining races. Given that the margin between a great time and falling by the wayside with a penalty is so slender, that’s a tough challenge. But .... we do love a challenge so we’re off to Canada in 4 days time with a rather different mindset and a somewhat modified game plan. Wish us luck!