Brageot crowned Challenger Cup Champion

The French pilot tops his 2015 season with the ultimate victory in the Challenger Class

Mika Brageot of the Breitling Racing Team

France's Mika Brageot hit the jackpot in Las Vegas on Sunday, clinching the top spot in the winner-takes-all Challenger Class competition, crowned as 2015 Challenger Cup Champion.

Joining him on the championship podium were Slovenia's Peter Podlunsek in second and Chile's Cristian Bolton in third, with less than four-tenths of a second separating their results in the tight battle.

The victory at Las Vegas Motor Speedway was the first Challenger Class title for the Frenchman, as well as a historic hat-trick. Brageot is the only pilot ever to claim three consecutive stops in a row in the new element of the Red Bull Air Race, which was introduced in 2014 to give the next generation of pilots the chance to develop their skills under racing conditions. All six competitors at Las Vegas Motor Speedway – who also included Florian Berger of Germany, Daniel Ryfa of Sweden and 2014 Challenger Cup Champion Petr Kopfstein of the Czech Republic ­– earned one or more podiums in the eight-race 2015 season.

"I think this latest win at a motorsport venue confirms that I like to race at auto tracks," said Brageot, whose previous career victories were at the Red Bull Ring Formula 1 track (2015) and the Texas Motor Speedway NASCAR track (2014 and 2015). "The purpose of the Challenger Cup is to bring young pilots to the top, and I think it's an important step toward building the skills necessary to fly in the Master Class. I couldn't feel better than I do winning this championship today."

The 2015 Red Bull Air Race season finale continues on Sunday, 18 October with the Master Class race that will decide the winner of the 2015 Red Bull Air Race World Championship.