The iconic Goodyear Blimp returns to European racing for the Le Mans 24 Hours 35 years after it was last seen above a race circuit in Europe.
A regular sight at Formula 1 races and at Le Mans in the seventies and eighties, the Blimp will once again be seen this summer in celebration of Goodyear’s return to European and international motorsport.
The first two events on the calendar will see the blimp at Le Mans marking the brand’s return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and then the Nürburgring where it will accompany the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup races as part of the Nürburgring 24 Hours race weekend.
The Goodyear Blimp is a globally recognized icon that has been an ambassador for the brand for almost a century.
Flying overhead at Le Mans, the Goodyear Blimp will provide live TV aerial coverage of on-track action, exciting passenger flights for guests, and serve as an eye-catching brand ambassador for Goodyear.
The Goodyear Blimp will also be providing live TV aerial coverage of the WTCR, FIA World Touring Car Cup as part of the 24-hour race weekend at the Nürburgring, Goodyear is the exclusive tyre supplier to every WTCR car.
The Goodyear Blimp that flies in Europe is the same model as the often seen flying at major sporting events, such as NASCAR, for which Goodyear is the exclusive tyre supplier, NBA games, American college football games and PGA golf events.
However, the Goodyear Blimp has an illustrious history in Europe, too. Between 1972 and 1986, a Goodyear Blimp named Europa appeared at a number of key events, from top-level sporting events such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, German Grand Prix and French Open, to key cultural moments including two British royal weddings.
Mike Rytokoski, Chief Marketing Officer, Europe at Goodyear, said: “A true icon that has captured the imaginations of fans and consumers across the world for almost a century, the Goodyear Blimp is instantly recognizable. Its return to Europe is long-awaited and is the perfect way to celebrate our return to European and international motorsport.”
The Goodyear Blimp operating in Europe is a Goodyear-branded Zeppelin NT semi-rigid airship. This model is the largest semi-rigid airship in the world today, measuring 75 meters long, up to 19.5 meters wide, and 17.4 meters tall.