- Associated Press - Friday, October 10, 2014

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - A team from Spain is the unofficial winner of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta’s 19th America’s Challenge distance race for gas balloons.

Race officials say the team of Anulfo Gonzalez and Angel Aguirre flew the 1,188 miles in 53 hours, 27 minutes and landed Friday west of Findlay, Kentucky.

The first team from Poland to compete in the event is the apparent second-place finishers. Krzysztof Zapart and Mateusz Rekas flew 941 miles and landed near Perryville, Missouri.

Missouri resident Barbara Fricke and Peter Cuneo are the event’s defending champions and three-time winners.

They flew the third-greatest distance at 825 miles and landed west of Searcy, Arkansas.

Seven balloon teams competed in the America’s Challenge race and took off Monday evening from Albuquerque.



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