Gualdo Cattaneo and Todi

Two beautiful small towns, perched on small hills over-looking their respective vallies are found in the middle of Italy’s central region of Umbria commonly known as the “Green Heart of Italy”, are proud to stage the 28th. edition of the Italian International Balloon Grand Prix after having staged the “Sagrantino Cup” for the past 7 years with the participation of circa 100 hot air balloons arriving ALL from abroad.

The Event

The event celebrate’s it’s 34th. year anniversary with this 2022 edition, having strenghtened during this time the general belief of being a truly “relaxed ballooning vacation” second to none on the international ballooning calendar.
It was with great pride that the organisation were able to announce that their 2020 event was one of only a very few international ballooning events of a “certain level” to have actually been held during the 2020 pandemic year………….Although this caused additional organisation for everybody involved again the event resulted in an enormous success and all teams returned home very happy they made the effort to attend!!
The event was staged the following year 2021 with great success enabling the organisation to look ahead with confidence at repeating the experience for 2022 and securing once again a most enjoyable ballooning occasion.

Because it is anticipated that a relatively high number of participating teams (circa 100)  will want to attend in July 2022 it has been decided to return to our most appreciated and enjoyable event format as for the past 7 years by using BOTH SIMULTANEOUSLY the Parco Acquarossa airfield in the Gualdo Cattaneo area and Ponte Naia/Pantalla in the Todi area so as to take full advantage of all the various and wonderful options they each offer.


Dear Ralph,
The Bennett Balloon team has now arrived safely back in the UK having had a fantastic time at the II° Sagrantino meet.
Thanks from all of us for all the hard work put in behind the scenes to produce such a great event. We loved the flying, the events you laid on, finding new restaurants and meeting new friends.
Thanks again for everything, we had a wonderful time.
Yours,  Peter Dowlen. (England)


Hi Ralph, just to say how much we enjoyed the balloon meet. Great pilot packs with wine and the really lovely framed fabric. We thought the organisation was great with so much to do in the evenings. You should be very proud of what you have achieved. Well done to you. Very best wishes, Geoff Down. (England)


Hi Ralph,
Many thanks for the wonderful vacation we had in Italy. It was a great experience, we made some fantastic flights, the food and wine were excellent!
I don’t know if it will be next year but we certainly come back!
Geert Ivens (Belgium)


Dear Ralph,
We like to thank you very much for all your work you have done for this (again) great event. We enjoyed ballooning and holiday in combination, had some nice flights, sights in nearby towns and some very relaxing hours just enjoying sunshine, pool and a good glass of wine or beer. As always, we have no fixed plans for every following year, but we’ll come back, sooner or little latter!
Dominik Haggeney (Germany)


Hi Ralph,
We are back home after an extended stay in Italy & Germany.
Just like to say a thankyou from all of us for organising a lovely meet as usual.
Hope to see you next year.
Thanks. David Head (England)


Hello Ralph,
We had a very good and relax drive back home. Ralph, this year it was really TOP!!
We were 9 days there, we had 9 flights….70 balloons…3 launch fields.. wine tastings…dinners…fantastic!!
We, Alda, my crew and myself like to THANK YOU so much for all your efforts….. It was really great!!.
Harry Vos. (Belgium)


Dear Ralph and team,
We would like to thank you all for the fantastic week and flights we had in and around Montefalco.
The social events in these old Italian villages and towns were fantastic, especially the evening at Arnaldo-Caprai was outstanding in food and location.
Hope we will be able to come again next year.
Thanks to all of you. Jean Klein (Luxembourg)


Hello Ralph,
I want to thank you for the welcome we received in Italy. We had a pleasant stay in Umbria. This is a beautiful area where landscapes, wine, food and people delighted us.
Best regards, Jean-Pierre Clergeau (France)


Hi Ralph,
We would like to thank you for such an excellent week, you have obviously put in a tremendous amount of hard work to make it all happen and the meet such a success! Sagrantino is a great base for the meet with excellent amenities and everything is central. Our accommodation at La Casella was also perfect and the owners extremely helpful. The countryside around Parco Acquarossa is just stunning to fly over and we also enjoyed flying from the different locations. So Ralphie, many thanks for such a memorable week-you did a grand job and we look forward to seeing you soon.
All our best. Stevie Burden (England)


Hi Ralph, thank you  very much for this year’s event, its been totally relaxing.Your event has always been an intimate balloon meet which draws me to it. 1200 miles is a long way to come and the relaxed intimacy is what draws me to it.  Personally I am a little concerned about your intention to create an event similar to Metz in terms of  high number  of balloon team participants which in my opinion would lose its appeal for many fans of your usual laidback and relaxed event. Please keep it as the world’s most relaxed balloon meet!!  Bruce Harris (England)


Brucie, let this be the least of your worries, we have no Intention to make our event anything like Metz!   Our event has success  because it has always been and always will be a very relaxed meet and it is for this reason we can only accept entries for the first 100 balloons. We had 72 balloons this year and we will aim for a max. 100 next but that’s it no more ever!! THIS MUST ALWAYS BE A BALLOONING VACATION!!   Ralph Shaw


Thank you Ralph. You gave us the perfect combination of flying and vacation. I remember your words “This is the most relaxed event in the world”. You are right, you going to see us again!! Pascal Maes (Belgium)


We may have travelled twice as far as those who went to Chambley, but we were so glad we’d chosen to go to Italy – Sagrantino to be precise, 30 miles south of Perugia… AEROSTAT/OCTOBER 2017
Derek Maltby (England)