2023 Sep.

Stefan Langer is the new Grand Prix Worldchampion!

After 4 challenging days of scoring, Stefan is enthroned in first place with his ASG 29.

The competition in Pavullo (Italy) was marked by mixed weather. It started with cancelled days due to unpredictable weather and improvements were only slowy coming.

So the first real scoring day started with a smaller task of 119 km. But Stefan was not intimidated by the waiting and the mixed weather and started directly with a day victory in the competition. With 114.9 km/h he earned his first 10 points and sniffed directly at the world champion title.

In the second race, the task was also increased by the improving weather, 168 km had to be flown. One of the pilots was always in the lead: Stefan Langer. But in the end Stefan had to face the reigning SGP (Sailplane Grand Prix) World Champion Sebastian Kawa in the Ventus 3. Kawa showed his skills and won with a lead of 2 minutes. Tilo Holighaus (Ventus 3) finished in 3rd place on this day. However, this did not change much in the overall standings, Stefan Langer remained on course for the world championship with a 6-point lead.

On the third day there was then the first setback. After a big task of 310 km, Stefan did not manage to show his potential over the entire distance. While he was leading for large parts of the task, one mistake was enough to be caught up and thus the gaggle was able to overtake him. This meant 12th place at the end of the day and 0 points after two great days. Since Tilo Holighaus won the day, Stefan’s lead in the overall standings shrank to one point. The bright spot of the day: Also chasers Sebastian Kawa and Alberto Sironi (AS 33) fluffed and could not catch up.

So now an exciting final was on the horizon. In the overall standings, also due to the extra point for the final race, six people could still become world champions. This day meant pure tension and the smaller task of 240 km called for a spectacle, because it was not as easy as expected.
Stefan started as on the previous days directly in his pace and was able to put himself in the lead, but as on the day before a mistake sneaked in with him and the gaggle could catch up. Now it was a matter of keeping one’s nerves. The penalty list shows that this day was difficult for everyone: Eight violations for crossing the finish line too low resulted in plenty of penalty points. In the end, Stefan finished the day in 9th place and thus only scored one point in the overall standings. Is that enough?
Yes! Because all direct pursuers of Stefan made mistakes and had problems with the weather or the technique.

The overall ranking was shuffled once. In the end Stefan Langer and Erik Borgmann (JS3) are in first place with 19 points, but Stefan becomes first and therefore Grand Prix World Champion in spite of equal points, due to his victory on the first day. Tilo Holighaus finished the competition, after a 16th place on the day, on 4th place overall and Sebastian Kawa did not fly the correct task on this day which resulted in 0 points and 6th place overall. Alberto Sironi finished 5th place overall with his AS 33.

It seems that the dramatic script of the SGP Finals 2023 had planned exactly that. A very thrilling competition with Stefan as the winner.

The whole Schleicher team congratulates you Stefan! Many beautiful flights and also on the world championship only the best for you!