America's Challenge Launch Scheduled Monday, October 7
Posted 2:00 pm (2000z)
Posted late Sunday night: Competitors unwind and reflect on tomorrow's race at Peter and Barbara's legendary lasagna party!
At a 12 noon (1800Z) briefing, pilots were advised that officials have decided to once again postpone the the 23rd America’s Challenge distance race for gas balloons. Launch is now anticipated Monday evening, October 7.
Hot air events at Balloon Fiesta Park on Sunday evening will go on as scheduled, including the balloon glow, skydivers, and fireworks.
The race officials will hold a briefing at 1 PM (2000z) on Monday to provide pilots with updated weather and final details. Immediately following the briefing, the teams will move to Balloon Fiesta Park to begin preparing their balloons for launch. Actual inflation should begin around 4:30 PM, with the launch sometime in the 8-9 PM time frame. Admission to Balloon Fiesta Park for this event is free. The launch will also be streamed live on Balloon Fiesta Live! on YouTube or at https://balloonfiesta.com/live-stream.
The delay in the launch will help to assure possible development of canyon winds in Albuquerque does not affect the launch of the gas balloons. Also, the 24-hour delay will allow the teams to take advantage of developing strong low-level winds across the central and Midwest United States, making for an exciting long-distance race.
Once the race begins, you can follow the balloons’ progress across America at bhttps://alloonfiesta.com/America’s Challenge-Live. Or, download the YB tracking app (free) and subscribe to Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta (also free, it’s possible the name will change to America’s Challenge). Some of the teams will also have social media sites where you can follow their progress, and we will post a list of those as we get them.
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