Row forces Red Bull Air Race from Budapest to Balaton

ZAMÁRDI | The Red Bull Air Race will land in a new venue this July after the Mayor of Budapest blocked plans for the race to be held in his city.

Photo: Armin Walcher / Red Bull Content Pool

Zamárdi, on the southern shore of Lake Balaton in Hungary, will host the competition for the first time on the 13th-14th July. The well-known holiday town has a population of just under 2,500 people – but with its experience hosting large outdoor events, dozens of hotels in the area and good links to the Hungarian capital, Zamárdi’s Mayor, Gyula Csákovics, is confident that the event will be a success.

He said: “The city of Zamardi has over 15 years of professional experience in hosting large, outdoor events and is perfectly suitable for hosting the Red Bull Air Race. The surroundings and the spectacular view will live up to the standards of the competition, and Red Bull Air Race will bring great publicity to both the city and the whole Balaton region.”

Red Bull Air Race officials have evaluated several towns on Lake Balaton in recent weeks after the Mayor of Budapest said he would not allow the race to be held there. István Tarlós has long called for the event to be banned from the city, citing noise complaints and disruption to the daily lives of local people.

Photo: Armin Walcher / Red Bull Content Pool

Budapest has hosted the air race in almost every year of the championship has been held: from 2003 to 2010 and again from 2015 to 2018, only missing the race in 2014. The venue is particularly well-loved by fans, who enjoy watching the aircraft fly over the River Danube, in front of the Hungarian Parliament and under the Chain Bridge.

Ticket holders for the Budapest race are entitled to a full refund; ticket options for the Balaton race will be announced soon.