Italy’s Alex Ploner won the FAI European Hang Gliding Championships 2022 when it finished at the weekend. He was a clear 200 points ahead of his Italian teammate Christian Ciech in second, with Germany’s Primoz Gricar in third.
The competition was held in Siglio in Italy from 10-23 July and saw excellent conditions, allowing nine tasks to be flown over the two weeks. All but the first one was longer than 100km, with a total of 1,329.1km of task racing flown over the competition.
The longest task was Task 4 and was 201.6km. Primoz Gricar won the day, getting round the course in 4h42mins. Thirty-four pilots made goal, with the last pilots in taking a mammoth six-and-a-half hours and landing just before 8pm.
Alex and Christian’s overall podium places helped push Italy into the top spot in the Nations medals. Italy won gold, Germany silver and Czech Republic bronze.
A total of 93 pilots from 14 European and four “guest” nations took part. Italy, headed up by Italian team leader Flavio Tebaldi, led the Nations competition from Task 2, and Alex Ploner lead the overall competition from Task 3.
The win is the third European championship title for Alex and adds another gold medal to his impressive tally. As well as European Champion, he has been Hang Gliding World Champion three times in Class 1 and twice in Class 5.
An unofficial record was also claimed by the competition itself for the most kilometres flown in a European championships.
Gold: Alex Ploner (ITA, Icaro 2000 Laminar), 8,642 points
Silver: Christian Ciech (ITA, Icaro 2000 Laminar), 8,443
Bronze: Primoz Gricar (DE, Aeros Combat GT), 8,148
Bronze: Czech Republic