Woman Ace Takes On Men In Extreme-sport Air Racing

Woman ace takes on men in extreme-sport air racing

LAUSITZRING, Germany, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 26th Sep, 2016 ) - For Melanie Astles, the only woman pilot to compete in the Red Bull Air Race, flying low and fast is a childhood dream come true and offers her the chance to literally go up against some of the best aerobatic pilots in the world. The race aboard single prop, high-performance aerobatic planes, takes place this year over three continents and eight venues. It started in March, in Abu Dhabi, with 22 competitors and winds up on October 15-16 in Las Vegas, in the United States for the final round after a stop in Indianapolis on October 1 and 2.

Flying at speeds of 370 km/h (230 miles/hour), pilots launch into a slalom-like obstacle course, winding their way between and around 25-metre-high (82-feet) light-cloth, air-filled pylons, just above water or ground level. The planes race against the clock, taking off one after another and flashing through the obstacles with just 3.5 metres to spare at each wingtip. "The psychological aspect is really important because you need to be completely focussed for one minute and 30 seconds, 110%, and a mistake of just one millisecond will cost you the race," says Astles, who was born in Rugby, England, to an English father and French mother, but who grew up mainly in France.