Matt Hall has qualified eighth for the fifth round of the Red Bull Air Race World Championships overhead the famous Ascot Racecourse just outside of London and will square off against former world champion Hannes Arch.

Hall’s first qualifying run was sixth quickest in the 14 man field and even though he improved by almost a second in his second and final run by clocking a time of 1:07.075 he slipped back eighth place by the end of the qualifying session.

The Australian and Austrian Arch will meet in the head-to-head round of 14, with the winner of each of the seven heats and the fastest runner-up to move through to the round of 8 before the four winners of that round fight for the title in the final four.

“The round of 14 against Hannes is going to be tough,” Hall said.

“We will need to improve if we want to beat Hannes and improve by a bit if we want to move through to the final four and compete for a podium spot.


“We will go away tonight and look at the data and see where we can get better.”

The Australian placed second at Ascot in 2015 before going on to win two of the season’s final three races and finish the year second in the world championship standings.

This year, after a slow start due to injury and an uncharacteristic mistake in the season opener, the former RAAF fighter pilot has moved up to seventh in the rankings following his third placed effort in round four in Budapest last month.

Australian audiences can watch Sunday’s race day online via www.redbullairrace.com/live OR on Fox Sports 3 (midnight – 1am for Round of 14) and Fox Sports 5 (2-3am for round of 8 and final 4).

The Ascot event will be followed by the final three rounds of the season in Lausitzring (Germany), Indianapolis and Las Vegas.