The west of England has long been associated with hot air ballooning prowess. The Exclusive Cup Balloon Race is set to consolidate this reputation this summer by hosting its iconic event in the skies of North Somerset.
The Exclusive Cup Balloon Race is Europe’s largest ballooning competition. Already in its 14th year, this bonanza will welcome balloons of all shapes and sizes to take part in a unique hot air ballooning race. Participants will take to the skies at dawn from different locations and will race each other to drop markers on targets planted in the Somerset countryside.
In order to add a touch of mystery, and to help to keep onlookers safe, the precise location of the ascents will be kept as a closely guarded secret. Ballooning enthusiasts will, instead, be able to see the balloons as they soar overhead.
Showing off balloons in this way is a fun way to introduce ballooning to local people. In previous years, balloons in the shapes of lions, panthers, koalas, and sheep have delighted onlookers and the event has featured night glows and fancy dress competitions. This year, the iconic nightglow is set to be a drive-in affair, ensuring that people can appreciate the magic of the glow from the comfort of their cars.
Somerset is a striking backdrop for hot air ballooning. If you are tempted to try your own hot air balloon adventure, we offer flights over Bristol, Bath, and other parts of the southwest.