Pete McLeod

Pete McLeod 2016

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Pilot bio

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Pete McLeod emerged as one of the top pilots during his third season in the Red Bull Air Race in 2014. He gained his first career victory in Las Vegas, three podiums, five Final 4 appearances and demonstrated some beautifully smooth flying. He added another podium finish in 2015, which disappointed the Canadian who is already looking towards 2016.

The fearless Canadian has turned the World Championship into a wide-open battle with his hard-charging style that regularly upset the favorites. McLeod made history in 2009 when he became the youngest pilot in the race at the age of 25 and in 2014 when he became the youngest race winner. The aviator is determined to become the sport's youngest-ever World Champion – which he admits is his goal. McLeod's aggressive style in the track can result in unpredictable penalty trouble, but his rise towards the top in an increasingly competitive field has given him lots of new fans in sports-crazed Canada.

First airborne at six weeks old, McLeod was handed the controls at the age of three whilst sitting on his dad's knee and has been flying ever since. An accomplished bush pilot flying floatplanes in rugged and remote northern Canada, McLeod got his Private Pilot's Licence at 16 and quickly turned to aerobatics. He earned his aerobatic instructor's rating at 18 and he began flying serious competitive aerobatics shortly after. Following early successes and several titles, including the North American Collegiate Championship at the age of 20, McLeod moved onto the professional world stage at the age of 23. He competed in international events on five continents. McLeod qualified for the Red Bull Air Race after strong results in the European Aerobatic Championships in 2008. This spurred him on to switch his competitive focus from aerobatics to racing.