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Nevada balloon gathering leads to colourful contest

Nearly 100 hot air balloons attended the 33rd annual Reno Balloon Race, with many of them competing in two races. The festival started at 5.15am on 5th September with the Super Glow Show, and the first mass balloon flight took place at 6.45am. The event then ran for two days until the 7th. As normal, several shaped hot air balloons took part, with the Race seeing the return of the Beagle Maximus and Darth Vader. Joining them for the first time was a giant pink cat and a representation of the lady that lived in the shoe. Last year the Glow Show could not take place due to high winds. This year, however, it was not a problem and the 25-minute show, which is choreographed to music, took place as planned. Many of the balloons took part in the two races. The first contest involved a series of large ‘X’s being laid out on the ground by the organisers, which the pilots had to find and throw beanbags onto. The balloonist that got their beanbag closest to the target would win. The second race was called the Hare and Hound, which saw a lead balloon take off before all of the others. The pilot would then choose a spot, land, and place an ‘X’ on the ground before launching again. All of the other balloons had to search out the target and drop bean bags over it. The pilot whose beanbag landed closest was declared the winner. Next year’s event is already being planned.
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