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World Air Games turns full circle as Turkey lands 2020 edition

The International Air Sports Federation (FAI) has announced that Turkey will host the 2020 edition of its World Air Games.

Turkey will stage the fifth edition of the multi-discipline event after also hosting the inaugural Games in 1997. Scheduled for September 2020, the Games will be split between Ankara, Antalya, Eskisehir, Efes/Selcuk, Ölüdeniz/Fethiye and Pammukale/Honaz.

The opening ceremony will take place in the capital Ankara, while the closing ceremony will be in the popular tourist destination of Antalya.

Kürşat Atilgan, president of Turkish FAI member Türk Hava Kurumu (THK), said: “More than two billion people from around the world can reach the centrally located tourist destination of Turkey in under four hours flight, making it an excellent venue for the FAI World Air Games 2020.

“We believe that holding the prestigious FAI World Air Games 2020 in Turkey will allow us to attract a younger generation of air sports fans, both within Turkey and worldwide.”

FAI president Frits Brink added: “A longstanding FAI member, THK has a lot of experience in organising air sports competitions, not least the very first FAI World Air Games in 1997. I feel confident that the federation will put on a fabulous show for the World Air Games – the biggest and most exciting event on the FAI calendar.”

After securing the event, Atilgan said that THK is planning a round of investment to improve facilities. He added: “Since being set up in 1925, THK has invested a lot in air sports infrastructures. Over the next two years, we are planning to invest further. For example, by buying new equipment and creating new airfields for each sport.”

The most recent edition of the Games took place in Dubai in 2015. Prior to that the event was hosted by Italy (2009), Spain (2001) and Turkey (1997).