The Air Race World Championship announced Friday it has canceled all three remaining races in its series for the rest of the year.
“We are extremely disappointed to announce that the Air Race World Championship will not be returning to the skies in 2022,” said a post on the organization’s Twitter account.
“Despite the tireless efforts and support of all of our race teams, specialist suppliers and partners, some of the challenges presented by COVID and further implications posed by the current global economic situation have simply been too great to overcome.
“The safety of our pilots and fans is paramount and without all of the intricate parts required for safe racing firmly in place we have been forced to make this very difficult decision to cancel the 2022 World Championship Series.
“We remain totally committed as event organizers, competitors and fans of this incredible sport as we now focus on 2023.
“Our thanks go out to fans around the world for their ongoing resilience and support. We’ll be updating on plans and news as it happens—stay tuned.”
Statement from Air Race. pic.twitter.com/AuAUlahSGk
— Air Race (@TheAirRace) August 12, 2022
Air races that had been scheduled for later this year include:
- Malaysia, September 10-11
- Jakarta, Indonesia, October 15-16
- Lake Macquarie, Australia, November 19-20
We’ll be racing at the beautiful Lake Macquarie in NSW, Australia in November! And it’s home to reigning World Champion, Matt Hall. Racing to defend his title in front of a home crowd is going to be quite something!#timetorace #airrace #smokeon pic.twitter.com/6awgcJUNRv
— Air Race (@TheAirRace) April 13, 2022
It’s been a challenging year for organizers. In May, the series announced the cancellation of an air race in Goodwood, England, that had been scheduled to take place in July.
It is with a heavy heart that we have had to make the difficult decision not to race at Goodwood in July 2022. There are a number of factors that have contributed to this, including significant logistics challenges that have arisen. pic.twitter.com/LyJDp20wmY
— Air Race (@TheAirRace) May 27, 2022
The Air Race World Championship’s roots extend back to 2003 and the Red Bull Air Race championship races, which were staged around the world and streamed online. Veteran elite race pilots like Mélanie Astles had planned to participate.
According to organizers, the events are intended to put a focus on “future tech, innovation, clean energy, and spectator experience.” Earlier this year, organizers said they were planning to “introduce a fleet of high-performance race planes on new, zero net carbon aviation fuel by 2023.”