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Wuhan emerging as city of aviation sports

Updated: 2017-11-09

The 2017 World Fly-in Expo (WFE) came to an end on Nov 7 in Wuhan, Hubei province, having brought Wuhan a new opportunity to develop its general aviation industry and to step forward to become a city of aviation sports.

The four-day expo attracted over 1,000 athletes, pilots and trainers from 37 countries and regions. More than 1,000 aircraft were showcased, 800 of which participated in the air show while 202 were on static display. The flight performances, which included powered parachutes and hot air balloons, took the expo to new heights.

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Aerobatic performance at the World Fly-in Expo (WFE) in Wuhan [Photo/WeChat account of the WHDZ]

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Spectators take in an aerobatic performance in Wuhan, Hubei province. [Photo/WeChat account of the WHDZ]

On Nov 7, the first Wuhan-made light aircraft, the SL600, successfully completed its maiden flight, marking the perfect ending of the expo.

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The light aircraft SL600 made in Wuhan completes its maiden flight on Nov 7 in Hannan General Aviation Airport. [Photo/WeChat account of the WHDZ]

Frits Brink, president of the Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI), said that the cooperation between FAI and Wuhan should extend to the next three years or even five years rather than ceasing at this expo.

"With a solid industrial base, and the support for aviation sports and general aviation industry from the government, Wuhan has limitless potential for development," Brink said, adding that the FAI would welcome a bid by Wuhan to host the World Air Games (WAG). 

To date, the WAG have been held in Spain, Turkey and Dubai. Wuhan, with its good general aviation infrastructure and rapid development in related industries, is likely to succeed in bringing the 2020 WAG to China.

Meanwhile, Wuhan will be included as a candidate to be named the eighth city of aviation sports, three of such cities being Quebec, Dubai and Riyadh, Brink stated.

He suggested that Wuhan should expend effort to become a world-class aviation city, adding that more people should be encouraged to participate in aviation sports and professionals in aeronautics and aviation sports should be trained.

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Visitors to the expo try the wind tunnel. [Photo/WeChat account of the WHDZ]