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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)
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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 : Free 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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15th Coupe Aéronautique Gordon Bennett - Antwerp (BEL) 1926

Start: Antwerp, May 30th 1926         

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

This year not Solbosch at Bruxelles, but Antwerp was selected as launch place. This town is not more distant from the sea, but that's something which cannot be a topic for discussion in Belgium. More surprising is the early date, the end of May. Also in the two years before, the Belgians had put the date to June, but all the other races had been held in autumn. There are mainly meteorological reasons for this, there is less tendency for heavy thunderstorms in autumn. Besides this, only the moon's phase has an influence on the date. Because the balloons fly through the night after the launch, it should be a full moon for better navigation. So we can be sure, that on May 30th 1926 the moon was shining, but the weather must have been quite awful. Already at inflation during the night from 29th to 30th of May there was pouring rain and a sharp wind. On the day of the launch at 4 p.m. the hydrogen balloon LILIPUT of only 170 cu m should fly ahead of the field with the French balloon pilot Charles Dollfus as a special attraction, but it was cancelled due to the weather. All the balloons launched completely soaked and had to be levelled out very light. After a few minutes they were out of sight for the spectators. This weather of course had influence on the results.

If such an experienced Gordon Bennett pilot like Maurice Bienaime, having already done 8 races, lands after 102 km, on the other side Ernest Demuyter covers 438 km in 4 hours (average speed about 88 km/h), it shows, that the flight was not a lazy one. So only a few competitors had the courage (or better: high-spirits?), to fly to the unknown and probably find themselves moving over the North Sea towards the Arctic next morning.

Already before launch failures happened. French balloons VIELLE TIGES and ANJOU were so severely damaged, that they had to be deflated. American Maxson was thrown overboard at the first try to land, his pilot Boettner flew on for a short distance, before he finally managed to bring to balloon to the ground. From rank 5 downwards, all pilots seem to have taken the first suitable field for landing.

Of no other Gordon Bennett Race there are such a few records as of the one in 1926. Also other collectors and experts of Gordon Bennett Races, living today, have discovered little. Not even the accurate duration of the three best balloons is known. The hours figured in the list of results seem to be rounded up or down. Probably the pilots did not have the time to record their exact landing time at a fast landing. The list of results seems "to be sewn in a great hurry". A pilot with the name "Capilari" is mentioned, who had never seen before and will never be seen again later. No pilot had ever heard from him. This mystery is solved by comparing some lists: Italian lieutenant Ilari, already flown in 1924 and 1925, had been promoted to Captain of cavalry thus becoming a Cap.Ilari. Belgian pilots Matton and Charmant appear on the lists without any nationality and the total entry of 18 balloons can only be read from the schedule of events. Our list of results therefore was completed with this information.

The race was won by the Americans Ward T. van Orman/Walter W. Morton, the same Van Orman, who managed the landing on the steamer VATERLAND the year before, after he had flown out to the Atlantic near Brest. The landing this year he performed at Sölvesborg, on the south coast of Sweden. With this he began a series of American victories which lasted for seven years and did almost again lead to a final end of the races. Second rank was achieved by his fellow -citizens Captain Gray/Johnson, who found their way back to earth in Mecklenburgia. Ernest Demuyter finished at Cuxhaven and last years winner Veenstra with his co-pilot Quersin found their landing-filed in East-Frisia.

There were other big performances recorded in the newspapers of these days: On May 9th the Americans Richard Evelyn Byrd and Floyd Bennet (with only one "t" and no relative to our James) managed the first human flight over the North Pole with a three engine Fokker from Spitzbergen in 15 1/2 hours. Roald Amundsen and Italian general Umberto Nobile followed only three days later with the airship NORGE. And another news, considering speed: On May 24th Finnish runner Paavo Nurmi sets up a new world record over 3000 meters in 8:24,4 minutes.

It was not in the newspapers that two days after the launch of the Gordon Bennett Race Marilyn Monroe was born. No one could have a presumed what this baby would become. But we see, we are approaching present times, for the glamorous days of Marilyn Monroe are not so far behind.

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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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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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