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Competitors for 6th FAI Sailplane Grand Prix World Final

  The countdown to one of the most exciting and competitive sporting events this fall has st...

Event Website for the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015 Now Up and Running

FAI invites you to visit the new event website for the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015. Managed by th...

Winners rewarded at the Prize Giving Ceremony of the 22nd FAI World Precision Flying Championship

The 22nd FAI World Precision Flying Championship competition ended on Thursday in Skive, Denmark, bu...

Solar Impulse to Continue its Round-The-World Mission in April 2016 Due to Damage to the Aircraft

The Solar Impulse team has today announced that irreversible damage to the batteries of the experime...

Two Eagles Balloon's Duration and Distance World Records Ratified by FAI

FAI has ratified two world records following the Two Eagle Balloon's fantastic flight across the P...

Event Website for the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015  Now Up....

Event Website for the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015 Now Up....

FAI invites you to visit the new event website for the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015. Managed by the Emirates Aerosports Federation (EAF) as the host of the event, it offers quick and easy access to ....

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FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015 - Bulletins Available for Dow....

FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015 - Bulletins Available for Dow....

The following bulletins for the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015 are now online:                    ....

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Dream of Seeing Air Sports at Olympic Games Postponed

Dream of Seeing Air Sports at Olympic Games Postponed

The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Organising Committee has announced that eight International Federations have been shortlisted for potential inclusion in the programme of the Games and will participate in....

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Paragliding : An Olympic Sport ?

Paragliding : An Olympic Sport ?

Following the invitation from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Organising Committee to 35 International Federations, the FAI has selected Paragliding as a potential additional sport. FAI, the FAI Hang G....

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2015 FAI Active Members’ Presidents Meeting in Alicante

2015 FAI Active Members’ Presidents Meeting in Alicante

The representatives of 18 FAI Members, the Executive Board and Head Office staff members gathered in Alicante, Spain, on Saturday for the 2015 FAI Active Members’ Presidents Meeting.

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8 July 2010: Borschberg Breaks  the First Solar-Powered Aeroplane Reco....

8 July 2010: Borschberg Breaks the First Solar-Powered Aeroplane Reco....

Five years ago today, Swiss pilot André Borschberg landed the zero-fuel aircraft Solar Impulse HB-SIA after a 26h 10m 19s flight from and to Payerne, Switzerland. A normal duration for a jet, but an ....

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23 June 2005: The Paramotoring Journey  of Alexander Bogdanov through ....

23 June 2005: The Paramotoring Journey of Alexander Bogdanov through ....

With an outstanding pilot in paramotoring, we would like to carry on with the series of FAI World Record anniversaries: Ten years ago on 23 June 2005, the three Russian pilots Vladimir Makurin, Nikola....

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21 May 2000: The Story of Lindsay Muir's Hot Air Balloon World Record

21 May 2000: The Story of Lindsay Muir's Hot Air Balloon World Record

Balloon World Record not broken since We are pleased to continue our series of world record celebrations with an exceptional woman in ballooning sports: British Lindsay Muir. She established a fema....

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Interview with Alexey Leonov, the First Man to Walk in Outer Space

Interview with Alexey Leonov, the First Man to Walk in Outer Space

On 18 March 1965, FAI celebrates the 50th anniversary of the first space-walk. Russian cosmonaut Alexey Leonov achieved this feat during the Voshkod 2 mission. He stayed out in space for 12 min 9 sec,....

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18 March 1965: Leonov Successfully Made the First Spacewalk

18 March 1965: Leonov Successfully Made the First Spacewalk

Today is a special day in the history of space exploration. It is the day, 50 years ago, that Russian cosmonaut Alexey Leonov became the first person to walk in space.

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Current Events

until 02 August 2015 9th FAI European Advanced Aerobatic Championships Deva (Romania)
until 01 August 2015 2015 FAI Qualifying Sailplane GP Zar (Poland)
until 01 August 2015 2015 Int. German Open Kobarid (Slovenia)
until 02 August 2015 19th Coupe d'Europe de Montgolfières et 24 ème Coupe du Monde des Dames Mainfonds (Angoulême), Charente (France)
until 07 September 2015 2015 ASIANIA "EMAX" video competition Location to be advised (To be advised)
until 01 August 2015 2015 FAI F3B World Championship for Model Gliders Arnhem (Netherlands)
until 01 August 2015 2015 Polish, Czech and Slovak Paragliding Open Championship Krusevo (Former Yugoslav Rep. of Macedonia)
until 02 August 2015 2015 Leti Svobodno Shumen - PG Accuracy League 2nd round Shumen (Bulgaria)
until 02 August 2015 2015 Transilvania XC Balea (Romania)
until 02 August 2015 2015 FAI F3J European Championship for Model Gliders Dupnitsa (Bulgaria)
until 01 August 2015 2015 Arboga Open Arboga (Sweden)
until 03 August 2015 2015 FAI F1 World Championships for Free Flight Model Aircraft Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia)
until 03 August 2015 2015 Kazakhstan Open Paragliding Championship Bolshenarym (Kazakhstan)
until 08 August 2015 2015 Klippeneck-Segelflug-Wettbewerb Klippeneck (Germany)
until 02 August 2015 3rd Cameli XC Open - Paragliding Cross Contry Competition Cameli (Turkey)
until 01 August 2015 7th Open Borgava Cup 2015 Borgava (Ukraine)
until 02 August 2015 2015 Honer Ratchaburi Paragliding Championship Open Khao Son, Ratchaburi (Thailand)
until 02 August 2015 2015 Klochkov Cup - Category S - Space Models Kaliningrad (Russia)
until 01 August 2015 2015 Aseer international Paragliding Championship 4 Alsodha (Saudi Arabia)
until 08 August 2015 2015 Czech Regional championship Hodkovice (Czech Rep.)
until 02 August 2015 2015 East Taiwan Valley Paragliding Accuracy National Open Championship & Pre-PGAWC event Luye Gaotai, Taitung County (Chinese Taipei)

Upcoming Events

01 August 2015 8th FAI Women's World Gliding Championship Arnborg (Denmark)
01 August 2015 1st FAI World 13.5m Class Gliding Championship Pociunai, Kaunas (Lithuania)
01 August 2015 2015 Azay Le Brulé Inter - Category F1 - Free Flight Beauvoir-sur-Niort (France)
01 August 2015 2015 Lithuanian National Championship Pociunai, Kaunas (Lithuania)
01 August 2015 2015 Swiss Open Fiesch Fiesch, Valais (Switzerland)
01 August 2015 1st southern Alps big tasks open Aspres sur Buech (France)
01 August 2015 2015 Petzen Open Petzen (Austria)
01 August 2015 2015 Serbia Open National Champs Zrenjanin (Serbia)
01 August 2015 2015 Ukraine Open Pylypets (Ukraine)
01 August 2015 2015 Challenge Feminin Lans en Vercors Lans en Vercors (France)
02 August 2015 18th FAI European Gliding Championships Rieti (Italy)
02 August 2015 2015 Big Spring Nationals Big Spring, Texas (USA)
02 August 2015 2015 Trofeo Internazionale Monte Cucco Monte Cucco (Italy)
03 August 2015 2015 International German Open Hanggliding Altes Lager (Germany)
03 August 2015 2015 Kobala open Tolmin (Slovenia)
More events

 

Latest FAI World Record Claims

26 July 2015 Rotorcraft : Speed over a recognised course : 4,6 km/h Norman Frank Surplus (GBR)
26 July 2015 Aeromodelling and Spacemodelling : Speed: 175 : 481,56 km/h Fabian Wunderlich (GER)
26 July 2015 Aeromodelling and Spacemodelling : Speed: 196 : 474,95 km/h Maximilian von Prondzinski (GER)
25 July 2015 Powered Aeroplanes : Speed over a recognised course : 325.00 km/h John E. Shavinsky (USA)
24 July 2015 Aeromodelling and Spacemodelling : Duration (ceiling less than 8 m): 125-a : 20 min 35 sec Akihiro Danjo (JPN)
24 July 2015 Aeromodelling and Spacemodelling : Distance in a closed circuit: 146 : 95 km Vladimir Kiselev (RUS)
24 July 2015 Aeromodelling and Spacemodelling : Speed: 203 : 282 km/h Miles Dunkel (GER)
24 July 2015 Aeromodelling and Spacemodelling : Distance to goal and return: 188 : 1'140 m Holger Lambertus (GER)
23 July 2015 Gliding : Distance using up to 3 turn points : 490,38 km Ghislaine Facon (FRA)
22 July 2015 Powered Aeroplanes : Speed over a recognised course : 15,02 km/h Michael Smith (AUS)
22 July 2015 Powered Aeroplanes : Speed over a recognised course : 14,93 km/ Michael Smith (AUS)
22 July 2015 Powered Aeroplanes : Speed over a recognised course : 215.00 km/h John E. Shavinsky (USA)
21 July 2015 Hang Gliding and Paragliding : Speed over an out-and-return course of 200 km : 30,97 km/h Seiko Fukuoka Naville (FRA)
20 July 2015 Powered Aeroplanes : Speed over a Commercial Airline Route : 666.63 km/h Jason Ryder (AUS)
16 July 2015 Gliding : Speed over a triangular course of 100 km : 193.00 km/h Sibylle Andresen (GER)
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12th Coupe Aéronautique Gordon Bennett - Brussels (BEL) 1923

Start: Brussels, September 23rd, 4 p.m.        

From the Book: Die Gordon Bennett Ballon Rennen
(The Gordon Bennett Races) by Ulrich Hohmann Sr

This will be the race, in which the attendant circumstances were to be more reported than about the flight itself. If this would have been the third victory in a series for Belgium (without the interruption by Switzerland in 1921), the 1923 Gordon Bennett Race could have been the last one. Who would have tried to set it up again, if five competitors had met death in the previous race?

Until 1998 no Gordon-Bennett-Race was cancelled or even postponed because of weather conditions. Snowstorms and rain often have struck the pilots with a lot of stress. It also often took days, until the first signs of life reached the championship organisation after landing and, let's remember 1908, sometimes it was believed, that some competitors had not survived the flight. But it had always ended well. 1923 became the most tragic of all competitions.

21 balloons were inflated in bright sunshine on the already known Solbosch plain near Bruxelles. The stands and places for spectators were well crowded, it is told, more than 100.000 people had been there. The wind wasn't very strong in the beginning, but quite gusty. Launch preparations were on the run, when the sky darkened and a heavy thunderstorm came up. Lightening flashed through the clouds, soon rain clattered down in heavy drops, followed by hail. Three teams from Italy and one from Poland (entered for the first time) declared, not to launch under these circumstances. Looking back, they made the right decision.

At about 4 p.m. PICARDIE launched first, flown by the Belgium Veenstra, who had been the second man in the basket of Demuyter the year before. It was the same balloon that had won the race for France with Bienaime in 1912. The Spanish balloon DURO followed with Guillen/Sierra. At the take-off of the third balloon, the first misfortune happened. U.S. ARMY S.6 was not exactly balanced, did not get enough altitude at the right time and hit VILLE DE BRUXELLES with its basket. The basket got caught in the net and tore it from the equator up to the vent. So the Belgium Labrousse also stayed on the ground, the year before he had been fourth. But that was not all of the mishaps at the launch. The balloon of the "eternal second" Honeywell, US ARMY was obviously filled too full. At about 5 p.m., a gust of wind shook the balloon so strongly, that it burst still on the ground. Honeywell, already in the basket, said afterwards: "This should have been my sixth Gordon Bennett Race, but fate said no".

With this wind it might have been very difficult for the launch crews to level out the balloons. Overall, all lifted only slowly and then had to dump a lot of ballast immediately to prevent them from crashing against the nearby houses. In the rush, whole sandbags flew overboard. It is a miracle, that no spectator, who stayed there in spite of the thunderstorm, got hurt. They did not see anything from the disasters that followed now for the balloons had already gone out of sight. First it met the Spanish balloon POLAR. After half an hour of flight he was above Heist op den Berg, when a flash of lightening struck its envelope, set the gas on fire and sent him burning back to earth. Co-pilot Penaranda did not survive the fall, Gomez was lucky, he survived, both legs broken. 40 minutes later a flash of lightening struck the Swiss balloon GENF with the pilots von Grüningen and Wehren. Both met death when the burning balloon sank to earth at Moll. The same happened to the Americans Olmstead and Choptaw, killed by lightening near Moerdyck.

There was no radio on board in those days. The other competitors got no news of the tragic occurrences if they had not seen them by themselves. They had to deal with the awful weather alone and landed very soon after short flights between 50 and 300 kilometres, mostly in the Netherlands, where the Spanish Magdalena/Baselga destroyed a high tension power line, but stood unhurt. Only four balloons reached longer distances. The Englishmen Spencer and Berry with their balloon MARGARET were pulled out of the sea 20 miles north of Skagen/Denmark. Swiss Armbruster with Dr.Bachmann in the basket of HELVETIA landed at Flensburg, close to the Baltic Sea. The Belgian balloons PICARDIE and BELGICA crossed the Sund flew deep into Sweden. Demuyter and his co-pilot Coeckelbergh still 150 kilometres more than Veenstra and Quersin. Demuyter had gained his third victory! Let us read his report:

report Demuyter

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2015 FAI Young Artists Contest

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This year's theme is "Create a poster for the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015". Give free rein to your imagination – you might earn one of the Gold, Silver or Bronze Medals!

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Clean sport

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Find out more about the FAI Anti-Doping Programme.

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Browse the list of the FAI Awards recipients.

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IOC Recognised

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3h 54m 59s = World Record manpowered aircraft

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There are 150 pilots in Paragliding Worlds

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