Irish record for multiple hot air balloon launch set at Waterford Airport

BALLOON enthusiasts at the Irish National Hot Air Ballooning Championships have today shown they’re definitely not just full of hot air!

Ever before most of us were out of our beds this morning, the eager hot air balloon enthusiasts were up, up and away at Waterford Airport, itching to make history. Within minutes of take-off, they had successfully secured their place in the record books for the largest ever number of hot air balloons taking off in-line at an Irish Airport.

The successful record-breaking feat was all part of the Irish National Hot Air Ballooning Championships which have filled the South East skyline with colourful balloons since Sunday last.

The successful record bid was made today, Thursday (Sept 24) at 8.00am with 23 eye-catching hot air balloons taking to the skies above the airport and booking their place in history.

The Irish National Hot Air Ballooning Championships are the longest running such event in the world and balloons from throughout Ireland, the UK, France, Holland, Italy and USA took part in the visually spectacular aviation event which has enthralled spectators over the past week.

Commenting on the Irish record success, an elated event organiser and balloonist Joe Daly said: “We are delighted to have set the Irish record for a mass in-line launch at an Irish airport. We are even more delighted that we broken this record at Waterford Airport while Waterford is hosting the 39th Irish National Championships. We would like to thank Waterford Airport for their assistance with Air Traffic Control throughout the week and for their generous support.”

Commenting on the site as the balloons landed, Graham Doyle, CEO, Waterford Airport said they too were thrilled to play their part. “Because hot air balloons are classed as aircraft, they are regulated under the very same aviation regulations as planes landing and taking off from here.

“We were delighted to provide Air Traffic Control assistance to the various crews all week and breaking this record just crowns what has been an amazing week here at the Airport. There’s something very majestic and elegant about hot air ballooning and these Championships definitely captured the imagination and the attention of the people of Waterford and the many people visiting this region over the past week,” Mr Doyle added.

The Irish National Hot Air Ballooning Championships continue in Waterford until tomorrow, Friday evening. The closing event for what has been a spectacular festival is a mass launch in Waterford City on Friday evening. Further information can be found on or

Sept 2009