We're now at the business end of the season – especially for the Challenger Class pilots of the Red Bull Air Race. This weekend's race in Indianapolis is the last chance for seven competitors to secure one of the six spots at the season finale in Fort Worth next month. Here's how they line up...
Bergér was scheduled to fly in Wiener Neustadt but due to personal circumstances had to pull out of the race, so he finds himself back in Indianapolis where he was crowned Challenger Class Champion last year. He currently sits fifth in the standings but has only raced twice so far this season and a good result here could see him propelled up the standings. There's every chance that he'll be in the final, but he might not have enough points to win his third title.
After back-to-back wins in Wiener Neustadt, Chiang is sitting at the top of the standings and has a chance to extend his lead in Indy. He is in the form of his career and best situated to get ahead in the rankings, but both Bergér and Coleman have raced here before and have the advantage.
Coleman needs a strong result here to make it to the final. He's currently sixth in the standings, but Patrick Davidson and Dario Costa are not too far behind and both racing in Indy. Coleman won in Kazan, but finished sixth in his last race. He'll be hoping for a strong result here in front of a supportive home crowd who will want to see him fly in Fort Worth.
Costa has made an impression in his debut season. He is ninth in the standings, but is only three points away from securing a place in the final. He'll have to go back to his Cannes performance, where he finished second, to boost his confidence. He'll believe he's got what it takes to make it into the final round in his debut season.
The other debutant, Davidson, is in the same situation as Costa, just three points away from a place in the final. He too has had a podium finish and it was in Wiener Neustadt, which shares similar conditions to Indianapolis - it's over land and a standing start. We'll find out this weekend if that gives Davidson the advantage...
Genevey currently sits bottom of the Challenger standings and only has a slight chance of making the final if all results go his way. However, he will want to finish his season on a high and will be looking forward to his first race in Indianapolis.
Vignes is currently third in the standings and has only finished off the podium once this season. The Frenchman will be extremely confident coming to Indianapolis, especially as he was third in both of the Wiener Neustadt races. He'll have to perform poorly to not make the final in Fort Worth.
You can follow all the Challenger action this weekend right HERE.