Some 35 teams are gearing up to compete in Qatar’s first Red Bull Flugtag event, which kicks off tomorrow, Nov. 1 at the Museum of Islamic Art Park under the patronage of Sheikha Al Mayassa bin Hamad Al Thani, chairperson of the Qatar Museums Authority.
During flugtag, which is German for “flying day,” competitors attempt to make airborne their homemade flying machines by launching them off a pier and into the water. The competition has been held in several cities worldwide, and in three Gulf countries, including Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait.
The crafts, which are intricately designed and must meet specific size and weight limits, rarely fly, but the events are popular, in part because each team is required to perform a 60-second show before take-off. In Qatar, craft designs include a giant pizza, pink flip-flops, a man in a ghutra and a falcon.
Teams, which are judged on distance, creativity, and showmanship, are also required to ensure their flying machines have floating devices to prevent sinking, and all team members will be provided with life jackets and helmets.
According to event organizer Murielle Kiwan, the first-place team wins a trip to Austria to the aircraft museum Hangar 7; second prize is a trip to Abu Dhabi to watch the Red Bull Air Race event; and third prize is a trip to Dubai for a skydiving session.
The event is free and open to the public, but the MIA Park and Museum of Islamic Art parking areas will be closed for the day. Visitors instead must park at one of three lots: close to the Ministry of Interior, the Qatar Sports Club and the Airport/Airport Road and take a free shuttle bus service. The service runs from 10am to 7pm.
Doors open for flugtag at 11am, and the first flight is at 1pm.
Who’s going? Thoughts?
Sounds interesting, and hopefully someone will record the highlights and post them on youtube. I’m just not inclined to battle the traffic and parking.