Sunday, September 10, 2006
Coupe Aeronautiqe Gordon Bennett
The 'Coupe Aeronautique Gordon Bennet' is a balloon race. Well it's not really a race more a competition as the winner is the hot air balloon that travels the furthest.
First run in 1906 from Paris, the event was organised by Gordon Bennet, an eccentric millionaire newspaper man from New York. 200,000 people turned up to watch the start in Paris. Most teams dared not cross the English channel but the team that did won the event landing in Scarborough on the North East coast.
This year the event is running for the 50th time and starting in Antwerp in Belgium. Rather like the Eurovision Song Contest the winner of the 'coupe' has the honour of hosting the following years event.
At present (10.09.06 12:24 UTC) the 16 competitors are winging their way accross the North Sea heading towards Norway. You can follow their progress live by GPS co-ordinates at the competition website.
Belgium 2 looks like it is going to pass over Middlesbrough. What a treat for the crew. Currrent position is (Team Name: Belgium 2Van Geyte, Luc / Paenen, RudyLast Update (UTC): 2006-09-10 12:03:12Position: N53°59'38" W001°32'47"Flown Distance (km): 495.09) . Putting that into Streetmap.co.uk they are currently passing over Harrogate. The Royal Pump Room Museum to be exact.
Museum in Harrogate used by Royalty though the ages for relief from flatulence
Germany 3 (Columus V) narrowly misses Middlesbrough instead passing over Skinningrove's Cliffs