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Roldanillo Paragliding World: It's been a blast!

« Good morning from Roldanillo for the final time of these Worlds. It's been a blast. » ...

Birmingham, USA, wins the bid to host The World Games 2021

The International World Games Association (IWGA) awarded the organisation of The World Games 2021 ...

Colombia welcomes the Paragliding World Championship

The 14th FAI World Paragliding Championship has started on January 10th in Roldanillo, Colombia, w...

FAI Sailplane Grand Prix news January 2015

The first FAI Sailplane Grand Prix event of 2015 at Worcester in the Cape Mountains of South Africa ...

CIAM Flyer (6-2014) - Creating Aeromodelling Exhibitions

Whenever aeromodellers appear in public, they encounter an appreciative audience. Air shows outdoors...

1985-2014 : The Two Stories of the Exceptional Pilots Who Fl....

1985-2014 : The Two Stories of the Exceptional Pilots Who Fl....

The Himalaya and its vast territories, gigantic mountains, spiritual people and wild beauty have long exerted extraordinary fascination - which is far from fading. Ever since the 19th century when Eu....

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Eric Bertin Hired to Support FAI Sports Team ahead of the FA....

Eric Bertin Hired to Support FAI Sports Team ahead of the FA....

The FAI is pleased to announce that Eric Bertin has joined the Federation as Sports and Events Manager on 15 December 2014. His focus is on the FAI World Air Games Dubai 2015 and he is the prime conta....

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Strategic Roadmap for the Future of the Olympic Movement Mad....

Strategic Roadmap for the Future of the Olympic Movement Mad....

The IOC has unveiled the final draft recommendations for Olympic Agenda 2020, which is the strategic roadmap for the future of the Olympic Movement. The FAI, which bears the status of IOC-Recognised ....

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UN Recognises the Autonomy of IOC and Sport

UN Recognises the Autonomy of IOC and Sport

The United Nations General Assembly recently adopted a Resolution on sport entitled "Sport as a means to promote education, health, development and peace”. It is the first time in its history that t....

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New Mission and Vision for FAI

New Mission and Vision for FAI

After extensive consultation with the Federation’s stakeholders, FAI adopted new Mission and Vision statements to help prioritise strategies and move steadily towards its objectives and goals. The ....

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Interview with Pierre Duval, President of the FAI Environmental Commis....

Interview with Pierre Duval, President of the FAI Environmental Commis....

Frenchman Pierre Duval, 50, is the new President of the FAI Environmental Commission (EnvC) since his election by the Delegates during the last annual meeting of the Commission in February 2013. He ....

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Tony Iberler, youngest pilot ever to participate in a world helicopter....

Tony Iberler, youngest pilot ever to participate in a world helicopter....

Tony Iberler qualified as an Helicopter Pilot in Germany on his 17th birthday, one year before he can legally drive a car. In 2012, still aged 17, he was selected as a member of the German National T....

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Interview with John Dickenson, recipient of the FAI Gold Air Medal

Interview with John Dickenson, recipient of the FAI Gold Air Medal

At the 2012 FAI Awards Ceremony held yesterday in Antalya, Turkey, John Dickenson was presented with the FAI Gold Air Medal by FAI President John Grubbström for his great contribution to the developm....

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Maxim Sotnikov (RUS): Helicopter Pilot

Maxim Sotnikov (RUS): Helicopter Pilot

Although Maxim Sotnikov learned to fly helicopters only 6 years ago, he is already one of the world’s best pilots and will be one to watch at the 14th FAI World Helicopter Championship that will t....

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Pál Tákats (HUN): Paragliding Aerobatics Champion

Pál Tákats (HUN): Paragliding Aerobatics Champion

At 16 years old, Pál knew that paragliding was going to be more than just the next new hobby sport for him. Dedicating his time to flying from the day he left school, he and his young and talented Hu....

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Current Events

until 31 January 2015 2015 Hombres Pajaro Colombia Santa Elena (Colombia)
until 31 January 2015 2015 FAI Qualifying Sailplane GP Vitacura (Chile)

Upcoming Events

27 January 2015 2015 Open FAI II Roldanillo Colombia Roldanillo (Colombia)
30 January 2015 2015 New Zealand Paragliding Championship - PG Open - Wanaka Wanaka (New Zealand)
30 January 2015 2015 F1N Indoor Open Ceminac - Category F1 - Free Flight Ceminac (Croatia)
07 February 2015 2015 Bright Open Mystic, Bright (Australia)
07 February 2015 2015 Kiwi World Cup - Category F1 - Free Flight Lost Hills, California (USA)
09 February 2015 2015 Open Trujillo Torococco (Venezuela)
10 February 2015 2015 North American cup - Category F1 - Free Flight Lost Hills, California (USA)
12 February 2015 2015 MaxMen International - Category F1 - Free Flight Lost Hills, California (USA)
12 February 2015 2015 MaxMen International - Category F1 - Free Flight Lost Hills, California (USA)
13 February 2015 2015 Abu Dhabi - Red Bull Air Race World Championship Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates)
15 February 2015 2015 The Corryong Open Corryong (Australia)
16 February 2015 2015 NSW State Titles Manilla, NSW (Australia)
17 February 2015 15th FAI World Para-Ski Championships Unterammergau (Germany)
20 February 2015 2015 Cup of Belarus - Category F2 - Control Line Circular Flight Minsk (Belarus)
21 February 2015 2015 Auckland Regional Paragliding competition Auckland (New Zealand)
More events

 

Latest FAI World Record Claims

15 November 2015 Parachuting : Longest sequence : 23 formations
22 January 2015 Gliding : Free triangle distance : 1258 km Max H.S. Leenders (NED)
22 January 2015 Gliding : Distance using up to 3 turn points : 1261.00 km Max H.S. Leenders (NED)
21 January 2015 Powered Aeroplanes : Speed around the world over both the Earth's poles : 72 km/h William C. Harrelson (USA)
13 January 2015 Ballooning : Duration : 7h 24min 35 sec Sandra Rolfe (CAN)
08 January 2015 Gliding : Speed over a triangular course of 100 km : 187.3 km/h Jan Ritsma (NED)
08 January 2015 Gliding : Speed over a triangular course of 100 km : 187.3 km/h Jan Ritsma (NED)
08 January 2015 Gliding : Out-and-return distance : 1101 km Max H.S. Leenders (NED)
08 January 2015 Gliding : Free out-and-return distance : 1106 km Max H.S. Leenders (NED)
07 January 2015 Gliding : Speed over a triangular course of 750 km : 156.66 km/h Johan Luyckx (BEL)
06 January 2015 Gliding : Speed over a triangular course of 100 km : 205.89 km/h Tiji Schmelzer (BEL)
02 January 2015 Gliding : Free Distance : 1308 km David Graham Jansen (AUS)
02 January 2015 Gliding : Free triangle distance : 1095.79 km Peter Rudi Temple (AUS)
22 December 2014 Powered Aeroplanes : Speed over a Commercial Airline Route : 940.00 km/h Rock Barchfeld (USA)
21 December 2014 Gliding : Speed over a triangular course of 100 km : 192.69 km/h Laszlo Hegedüs (HUN)
More records

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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FAI Awards

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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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Glenn was the first American to orbit the Earth

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There are 150 pilots in Paragliding Worlds