Our “Top of Hungary 2015” series aims to represent fifteen episodes of the the year, which – according to our assessment – played an important role in the public, cultural or sport life of Hungary during the last twelve months. Regardless of the positive or negative aspects, we have evaluated the events separately, therefore our list reflects nothing more but the personal opinion of the editorial team.
The fifteenth most important Hungary-related event: Red Bull Air Race in Budapest
The Red Bull Air Race World Championships series came to the Hungarian capital on the weekend of 4-5 July. The race track was marked by inflatable gates on the River Danube between the Chain Bridge and Margaret Bridge, in front of the parliament building. The embankments of the Danube were lined with hundreds of thousands of spectators to witness the spectacular event, which saw Austria’s Hannes Arch winning the Budapest race. A total of 14 pilots competed in the race and the runner-up was Britain’s Paul Bonhomme, followed by Martin Sonka from the Czech Republic.
Hungary’s 2003 World Champion Péter Besenyei finished in sixth place in Budapest, being defeated by Canadian pilot Pete McLeod among the best eight despite scoring his best time in the season. Three months later, Besenyei announced his retirement after the race in Las Vegas, concluding his successful career as Red Bull Air Race pilot. The popular sportsman said he wanted to spend much more time with his family in the future. The 59-year old Hungarian is one of the most successful pilots in the history of the Red Bull series as joint third on the all-time race wins list with eight career victories. He also had 22 podiums in nine seasons.