Red Bull Air Race returns to San Diego

Event is Saturday and Sunday at Embarcadero
Posted at 7:59 AM, Apr 14, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-14 11:11:07-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The skies above San Diego will look like a NASCAR race this weekend, as the Red Bull Air Race returns to America's Finest City for the first time since 2009.

Pilots will navigate two laps of a course 50 feet above the San Diego harbor. Their planes can go as fast as 230 mph and pull 10 Gs.

"I know it looks crazy, but it's very calculated," said pilot Kevin Coleman.

Coleman is the youngest Red Bull Air Race pilot ever, and this weekend will be his first time flying in San Diego.

"It's awesome for me to be in San Diego," Coleman said. "Because of the Naval base here, all the fighter pilots, the F-18s are here, the Navy SEAL training. This is a special place to fly."

The pilots say the races are unlike anything San Diego fans are used to seeing in the skies over their city.

"At Miramar, you see the aerobatic planes. That's one aspect," said pilot Mike Goulian. "But this takes that vertical turning and agility and puts it against the clock and flying through gates. So, it's really the next level."

The event starts at 11:45 a.m. Saturday and noon on Sunday. Both days have races and side acts until 6 p.m.

You can see the races from most places along the Embarcadero or near the Ferry Landing in Coronado. However, organizers say the best vantage point will be from the parks behind the Convention Center.

Tickets for that seating area are available at