Sunday's Red Bull Flugtag in Dublin was the 100th such event around the world. We celebrate a glorious 20-year history with 20 facts you might not know about the wackiest airshow on the planet.
The first Red Bull Flugtag took place in Austria in 1991.
One hundred thousand people were in Dublin last weekend to watch Red Bull Flugtag, up to 300,000 have attended some events.
'Flugtag’ translates from German into English as ‘Flying Day’.
Each Flugtag performance is judged not only on the flight distance, but also the creativity of the craft and a 30-second period for the teams to impress the judges with a display of acting before take-off.
Most craft crash straight off the ramp into the water, but the flying distance record is an amazing 207ft (63m) – it was set last year in St Paul, Minnesota, USA. Watch the video here…
The previous distance record of 195ft (59m) had been set a whole 10 years previously in Austria in 2000.
A subcategory aimed at high-level engineering students in Dublin was designed to challenge teams to break the distance record. Sadly for them, no one did this time.
Since 1999, Red Bull Flugtag has visited Ireland no fewer than five times.
An online 3D Game, Red Bull Flugtag Flightlab, allows users to design and campaign their crafts in a virtual world. Play the game at www.redbullflightlab.com
In 2005, organisers in Gothenburg, Sweden, dropped a UFO on the street, with local radio reporting the ‘sighting’. Unfortunately the ‘UFO’, in fact a Flugtag craft, was soon stolen!
The maximum weight for a Flugtag craft, including the pilots, is 450lb (204kg).
To avoid any unnecessary accidents, Flugtag creations must also be no wider than 30ft (10m).
All crafts must be human-powered only – no batteries, engines or other forms of propulsion are allowed.
One of the abiding memories of every event is the number of amusing crashes. Enjoy a video of the top 10 best at redbullflugtagusa.com
Forty teams, each of five people, took part in Dublin 2011.
In 2003, Israeli organisers took a full-size craft around colleges there to spread the word of Flugtag to students. They were so successful, they went on a world tour!
Only certain conditions allow Flugtag to take place safely – in November 2003, a hurricane warning caused the cancellation of one event in Miami, Florida, USA.
Enterprising organisers used a ‘mini-Flugtag’ event with miniature paper craft to drum up interest in South African student communities in 2002.
Flugtag events, such as the forthcoming trip to Leeds, UK, in July, are always free for spectators to enter.
- Red Bull Flugtag Dublin event page at redbull.ie
- More Creativity on redbull.com
- More water-based craziness with wakeboarder Duncan Zuur