A Great Big City

Blimp Race on the Hudson

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Place your bets! Which blimp will be the quickest to race up the Hudson?

After originally being scheduled for July 3rd, inclement weather moved the Independence Airship Invitational to July 4th at 5pm. Three blimps, which are frequently seen flying in the Northeast area, will line up at the Statue of Liberty and race up the Hudson River in celebration of Lady Liberty’s 125th anniversary. Check out the stats below to see which blimp might win and follow along on Twitter to see updates during the race

The last blimp race along the Hudson was in 1986, during the Statue of Liberty’s centennial celebration, when as many as seven blimps were in the area, and four participated in the race! Check out photos from The Great Blimp Race 1986 and a gallery of the blimps landing after the race.

Blimps racing above NYC in 1986

This year’s participants:

DIRECTV

DIRECTV Blimp by gsbrown99 on Flickr

Lightship A170LS

  • Length: 178ft
  • Max Speed: 48mph
  • Twin Lycoming IO 360, rated 180 hp

Follow the DIRECTV blimp on Twitter @dtvblimp

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield

Lightship A60+

  • Length: 128ft
  • Max Speed: 53mph
  • Twin 80 horsepower Limbach engines

Learn more at the Horizon BCBSNJ page

Hangar One Vodka

Lightship A60+

  • Length: 128ft
  • Max Speed: 53mph
  • Twin 80 horsepower Limbach engines

Learn more at the Hangar One Blimp Tour page

Update:

Congrats to Horizon BCBSNJ on winning the race! Here are a few shots of the action: