Huge congratulations are in order for our pilot Lindsay Muir who won the 2nd FAI European Women's Hot Air Balloon Championinship at the weekend. The competition was held in Frankenthal, Germany, from 18th - 22nd September and Lindsay - the only British representative out of 25 competitors – fought hard in G-LOKI, her Ultramagic M77 balloon, to secure 13952 points in total, a comfortable 700 points ahead of runner-up Daiva Rakauskaite, from Lithuania.

Lindsay winner of European Balloon Championship Copyright David Strassman

To win Lindsay needed to complete a series of six flights facing challenges such as dropping markers on targets on the ground to score points. This requires a huge amount of skill to anticipate wind speed and direction with very fine control of the balloon’s altitude. She recalled “One of the most challenging tasks required taking the balloon up to 7000ft and then dropping to come down and hit the goal on the ground.”
We asked Lindsay how flying in a competition compares to flying in her 16-man passenger balloon, she said:
“Whenever anyone asks me that I always say its like driving a double decker bus to driving a formula one racing car, they are miles apart! In competition, the balloon is smaller so you can throw it around a bit to change the direction and there is the pressure to hit the targets. When I’m flying my passengers, the balloon is much bigger and I am more concentrated on entertaining them and making sure they enjoy the flight.” Ladies European Balloon Championship Copyright David Strassman 2012
Lindsay told us she was more emotional than she thought she would be when she won.
“It meant a huge amount to win this competition, I was one of the most experienced competitors and I felt that there was a lot of expectation on me to win. I have competed in many competitions but to win this one meant a lot. I remember just giving my husband a big hug when I won.”
Simply click here to view a breakdown of the competition results. You can fly with Lindsay from any of our Shropshire launch sites or you can choose from over 100 other launch sites we have across mainland Britain. Don’t hesitate to book your experience now for as little as £99pp.