Winners crowned at UK’s biggest paper plane-throwing competition

·1-min read

Two university students were crowned for impressive performances at the UK’s biggest paper plane-throwing competition.

Billy Smith, 21, from Sheffield Hallam University nabbed first place at the national final in the longest flight category, as his plane stayed in the air for 7.74 seconds.

De Montfort University Leicester student Yicheng Sun won in the distance category, throwing 48.21 metres.

Billy Smith
Billy Smith, who is studying to be a paramedic in Sheffield, won the airtime category (Mark Roe/Red Bull Content Pool/PA)

The Red Bull Paper Wings event at Alexandra Palace in north London sees both men qualify for the world final at Hangar 7 in Salzburg, Austria in May, which will also be monitored by Guinness Book of World Records’ officials.

They beat more than 45 paper plane pilots, each equipped with a plain sheet of A4 paper.

Yicheng Sun
Yicheng Sun was the distance winner at the event (Mark Roe/Red Bull Content Pool/PA)

Planes can only be modified by folding – no ripping, gluing, cutting, stapling or weighting of the plane is permitted.

The challenge is to come up with the best aerodynamic designs and techniques, taking into consideration the angles, lift, centre and tail of the plane, and folding it as precisely as possible.

Mr Smith, who is studying to be a paramedic, said he was “so happy” with the win.

Paper plane
Planes can only be modified by folding (Mark Roe/Red Bull Content Pool/PA)

“I’m so happy I’ve qualified for the world final of Red Bull Paper Wings in Austria, representing the UK in the competition,” he said.

“I am going to be refining my paper plane-making skills and strategy ahead of the world final.”

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