There are many amazing photos from the officially fastest motosport on the planet, Red Bull Air Race, that I shot for the past several years and many of them were published in various press medias, but this portrait of pilot Peter Besenyei got used for the can of Red Bull and I’m happy to share this with everyone.
WHO IS PETER BESENYEI ?
Péter Besenyei is a renowned Hungarian aerobatics pilot and world champion air racer. He was born on June 8, 1956 in Körmend, Hungary. From watching 1962 World Aerobatic Championships he decided to become a pilot. At 15 years of age he flew a glider for the first time. In 1976 Péter entered his first flying competition by piloting a glider and showed his talent, finishing in second place.
Péter Besenyei’s title of ‘Godfather of the Red Bull Air Race’ is well deserved. Having obtained his pilot’s licence aged 19 and been an aerobatic pilot since 1981, Besenyei is nothing short of a legend of the skies. His unparalleled experience and expertise was put to good use when he was called in to help develop the Red Bull Air Race in 2001. He was the test pilot responsible for proving out the Air Gate technology and an integral member of the group that developed the race format. Not only is Péter an innovator in the air, he’s also a pioneer on the ground. He was closely involved in the development of a special new raceplane called the Corvus Racer 540, which debuted in the midst of the 2010 season.
WHAT IS RED BULL AIR RACE ?
The Red Bull Air Race World Championship is an official World Championship, accredited by the FAI – The World Air Sports Federation. Since it was officially launched, the Red Bull Air Race World Championship has become globally renowned as the fastest and most exhilarating motorsport on the planet. It was established in 2003 and created by Red Bull GmbH, as an international series of air races in which competitors have to navigate a challenging obstacle course in the fastest time. Pilots fly individually against the clock and have to complete tight turns through a slalom course consisting of pylons, known as “Air Gates”. The races are held mainly over water near cities, but are also held at airfields or natural wonders. They are accompanied by a supporting program of show flights. Races are usually flown on weekends with the first day for qualification then knockout finals the day after. The events attract large crowds and are broadcast, both live and taped, in many nations. It is a visual spectacle unlike any other. A combination of high speed, low altitude and extreme manoeuvrability make it only accessible to the world’s most exceptional pilots.