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Formula One of the Skies: The Red Bull Air Race, Part 3: A Short History

Sheiban ShakeriSenior Analyst IDecember 19, 2016

On Thursday, the Red Bull Air Race enters its sixth season with 12 competitors ready to take on each other for supremacy of the skies. But seriously, has it only been six years?

Believe it or not, the Air Race started in Zeltweg, Austria in 2003 during the AirPower Show with only seven competitors flying for supremacy. Almost two months later, it went to Budapest, Hungary and that was the season with Peter Besenyei, the World Aerobatics champion taking the first Red Bull Air Race world title.

From a humble two races in 2003 in Central and Eastern Europe to 10 races spread around the globe from the Middle East to North America, Europe and Down Under, the Red Bull Air Race has become the newest form of motorsport that is gaining acceptance among the established motorsports, mainly due to Red Bull's presence in those realms.

The idea for an air race came in 2001 when Red Bull wanted to create a new aviation event. The main aim of this new aviation event was to challenge the most talented pilots around the world in speed, precision and skill. With lots of testing of concepts and lots of safety precautions, the Red Bull Air Race became a reality when it took off to become currently the only racing series with three dimensions.

The first stop of the race is in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates in the Port of Mina Zayid. Enjoy the race! 

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