World Air Games take over Dubai skies - in pictures



Could there be a better city in the world to hold a competition in the skies than Dubai?

As these images show, the combination of clear winter skies and a stunning backdrop that includes the Palm Jumeirah and the Burj Khalifa suggests that the home of some of the most exciting architecture was born to host the World Air Games.

For those unfamiliar with the competition – it has been held only three times, and not since 2009 – it could be described as the aerial Olympics.

Created by the Federation Aeronautique Internationale, athletes compete in sports ranging from aerobatics and hot-air ballooning to gliding and parachuting.

There is even a category for aeromodeling – better known as model aircraft. The Games, like any test of skill that defies gravity, are not without risk, as the crash of a gyrocopter last week showed.

First held in Turkey in 1997, the Games last took place in Italy in 2009. Plans for the competition in Denmark four years ago were abandoned after the host city of Odense withdrew. In Dubai, however, the World Air Games seems to have found its groove.

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