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Mon, Feb 24, 2014

Albuquerque Bidding For World Ballooning Championships

America's Ballooning City Is Bidding Against Saga, Japan

The City of Albuquerque, New Mexico and the Balloon Federation of America is inviting the world’s hot air ballooning community to return to the Land of Enchantment for the 2016 World Hot Air Balloon Championship. The Duke City is one of two sites bidding for the host role, the other is Saga, Japan.

Albuquerque is already considered by most as the world center of ballooning as it is host to the annual Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta each October. Balloon Fiesta is the largest hot air ballooning event in the world. Albuquerque was selected to host the first World Championship in 1973 and the second in 1975. In that first championship there were a mere 30 pilots representing 14 countries. For the 2016 Championship there will be provision for 105 pilots.

If the Albuquerque bid is accepted it is anticipated that the World competition will begin the week prior to the annual Balloon in October and conclude mid-week with the Balloon Fiesta’s annual international Flight of the Nations. Between 20 and 30 nations are typically represented at Balloon Fiesta.

A delegation from the BFA and Albuquerque will journey to Lausanne, Switzerland, March 19-22, 2014 to make a formal presentation to the annual meeting of the Federation Aeronautique Internationale’s Ballooning Commission.

A decision is expected to be announced by the close of that meeting.

The World Hot Air Balloon Championships are held every two years with Rio Claro, Brazil playing host this year July 17-27.




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