28 Aug 2018

British pilot Bareford victorious at 23rd FAI World Hot Air Balloon Championship

Great news air sports fans! We have a brand new FAI Hot Air Balloon World Champion: the British pilot Dominic Bareford.

The young Briton took on a huge field of the best balloonists in the world to finish in first place at the 23rd FAI World Hot Air Balloon Championship in Groß Siegharts in Austria.

He was joined on the podium by Stefan Zeberli of Switzerland in silver medal position, and Russia's Sergey Latypov in third place.

The three balloonists earned their places by competing in a range of events including “Fox Hunting”, in which they had to follow a pre-determined balloon, and distance contests, in which they had to cover as little or as much ground as possible.

Several thousand spectators travelled to Groß Siegharts between August 18 and 25 to enjoy the FAI World Hot Air Balloon Championship 2018.

The Championship, which is held every two years, also welcomed some 150 teams from 38 different nations, and included a Kids Day, and a stunning “Night Glow” event involving some 40 balloons.

Full results are now available online. Congratulations to the winning pilots, to all those who took part in the competition – and to the organisers for putting on such a successful event! 

Photo credit: Patrick Matzinger