British Airways captain, Paul Bonhomme, talks Red Bull Air Racing and flying for the airlines

(Picture by: Stuart Bailey / British Airways)

As one of the most successful pilots in the history of the Red Bull Air Race, Paul Bonhomme is the only one to have competed in every race since it began in 2003. Captain  Bonhomme is a Double World Champion and currently leads the Masterclass with 34 points. In the Red Bull Air Race, which is the official world championship of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI), the world’s top pilots hit speeds of 370 km/h while enduring forces of up to 10G as they navigate as precisely as possible through a low-level slalom track marked by 25-meter high air-filled pylons.

When Bonhomme isn’t challenging for the Red Bull Air Race World Championship he is flying 747s for British Airways, where he started his career as a pilot in 1988. Bonhomme comes from family with flying in its blood. His father was also a pilot, his mother a cabin crew and his brother Steven is also a Captain with British Airways.

Bonhomme is lucky enough to be able to switch between flying his single-seat race plane and a massive 345 seat, four-engine British Airways 747 Jumbo Jet.

He says, “I absolutely love the mix of what I do. After a few days of flying a jumbo, I’m ready to go and turn myself upside down. Likewise after a week of air racing, you’re getting to the stage where you think, ‘It would be great to have a change.’ So then I come and fly one of these 747s.”

Tickets are still available to see Bonhomme in action at the Red Bull Air Race next weekend, you can buy your ticket at