aerogp-trAbu Dhabi’s heritage heartland of Al Ain hosted Aerobatic Show – one of the world’s top events and the only one to combine military and civilian aerobatic displays – has soared to record breaking heights.

The Al Ain Aerobatic Show has welcomed fans from across the globe with many from as far as Canada, the USA, Chile and Australia while also attracting a global viewing audience.

Father and son Saad and Izhar Athar had driven up from Dubai to visit the show for the first time and were impressed from the moment the model flying display kicked off day three.

Al Ain Aerobatic Show, the Middle East’s premier aerobatics event, held January 27-30 2010.

A record 23 international teams, a re-formatted Aero GP and enhanced Spectator Village will take the Al Ain Aerobatic Show; Al Ain’s largest and longest-running sporting festival, to new heights last weekend.

In a nail-biting finale to four days of aerial amazement, Zoltan Veres of Hungry took top honours in the Al Ain Aerobatic Show’s thrilling Aero GP competition – an aerobatics triathlon regarded as aviation’s answer to Formula One.

Spectators packed the main grandstand to capacity to watch six of the world’s top aviators, flying six of the world’s top competition aircraft, demonstrate their gravity-defying skills over the beautiful rolling red sands around Al Ain’s International Airport.

And they weren’t disappointed, as flying-ace Veres showed why he is regarded as one of the world’s top aerobatic pilots with a stunning wire-to-wire victory to claim his second title in Al Ain.

Accepting his prize from Faisal Al Sheikh, Head – Major Event’s Division of Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA), which organises the Al Ain Aerobatic Show in conjunction with the UAE Air Force, Veres said it had been both a tough and exhilarating competition.

“Winning is always great, but in this event I felt that all six of us were winners. However fortune smiled on me today rather than the others,” he said.

A sure-fire crowd pleaser was Ali Ozturk – Turkey’s leading display pilot, flying an Acromach Super S2S in a solo display in which he threw his 350HP ‘Purple Violet’ across the skies in gay abandon, trailing thick smoke as it screwed through the air, pulling back to fly through his own smoke trails. Ali has been flying solo aerobatics since the turn of the century with over 4,500 hours and over 360 air shows to his credit.