Bergér: “I Want That Third Title”
Florian Bergér has been the man to watch in the Challenger Cup since he first burst onto the circuit in 2015 and almost claimed a podium in his first race, missing out on the win by just 0.572s.
Since then he has gone on to claim two titles, seven race wins, and a total of 15 podiums – the most successful pilot in the history of the Challenger Class.
The German pilot missed out on a third title at the end of the 2018 season, with the final result decided on a count-back. Bergér and Luke Czepiela had tied on points, and the same number of race wins, and both had two second places. Ultimately, the fact that Czepiela had another race result saw him crowned champion. The race for the title couldn’t have been much closer.
Bergér is well aware of how close he came to winning, but has still taken many positives from the 2018 season. “For sure I was disappointed I came second. This was due to the fact I had the same points like Luke, but with one race less. But that’s the rules,” he said. “On the other hand I was very pleased with my performance. I was on the podium at every one of my races. When I look at it from this point of view, I can really be proud. Even with one race less, I nearly won the championship. And of course it was my decision to skip a race for family reasons. I am very happy that the race organisers were so helpful with that issue.”
With just one race completed so far in the 2019 season, Bergér is already on the top of the leaderboard after winning the season opener in Abu Dhabi. The 30-year-old is already in the history books with two Challenger title wins, but he wants his hat-trick. “For sure I want to get the third title, but I feel no pressure. I won the Championship twice and one time was second overall, so it’s more than I have ever expected. My goal is to be competitive,” he exclaimed.
There has been lots of talk over the least year on Bergér’s move into the Master Class. Will it happen? If so, when? But the German pilot remains mellow when he speculates on his Red Bull Air Race future. “When I think about moving up to the Master Class, of course, the sooner the better. But honestly, you cannot make a plan. It could be next year, or never. There are several aspects, which all have to come together. I try everything to get there. One aspect is the flying part – being competitive and safe. I think I have proved that. The other part is having a team and a good sponsor behind you. Otherwise it’s very hard to do it. If they [the Race Committee] move me up to the Master Class, I have a team ready to go. The biggest challenge for me at the moment is finding a sponsor,” Bergér concluded.