Lilienthal Gliding Medal

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Lilienthal Gliding Medal
Awarded for Remarkable performance in gliding, or eminent services to the sport of gliding over a long period of time
Country International
Presented by Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI)
First awarded 1938
Last awarded 2016
Official website Official site
Obverse of the Lilienthal Medal
Reverse of the Lilienthal Medal awarded to Tadeusz Góra

Lilienthal Gliding Medal – the highest soaring award in the world, established by Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI) in 1938 in honor of Otto Lilienthal, a German pioneer of human aviation. It aims "to reward a particularly remarkable performance in gliding, or eminent services to the sport of gliding over a long period of time". The award is made at the annual FAI General Conference.[1] Medal was designed by Austrian artist Josef Humplik.

The first winner of the Lilienthal Gliding Medal in the world was Tadeusz Góra for his record-breaking 577.8-kilometer flight on May 18, 1938, glider PWS-101 from Bezmiechowa to Soleczniki (near Vilnius).

The Medal is awarded by a vote of the Delegates to the International Gliding Commission at the annual Plenary in March. In 2012 it was decided to end the practice of awarding the Medal for accomplishments of the previous calendar year, and to associate the Medal with the year in which the recipient is determined. Consequently, the year 2013 does not appear in the table below.


Recipients of this award, from 1938 to present, include:[2]

Year Recipient Notes
1938 Poland Tadeusz Góra for a goal flight of 577 kilometers
1948 Sweden Per-Axel Persson
1949 United States John C. Robinson
1950 United States William S. Ivans
1951 France Marcelle Choisnet-Gohard
1952 France Charles Atger
1953 Soviet Union Victor Iltchenko Flight of 520 miles, a world two-seater record, from Moscow to Stalingrad[3]
1954 United Kingdom Philip Wills
1955 Germany Joachim Küttner
1956 United States Paul MacCready
1957 Spain Don Luis Vicente Juez Gomez
1958 Germany Wolf Hirth
1959 United States Richard Schreder
1960 Poland Pelagia Majewska
1961 Switzerland Adolph Gehriger
1962 United States Paul Bikle
1963 Germany Heinz Huth
1964 United States Alvin H. Parker
1965 Poland Edward Makula
1966 United Kingdom Anne Burns
1967 Sweden Lennart Stahlfors
1968 Chile Alejo Williamson
1969 France Eric Nessler
1970 Germany Hans-Werner Grosse
1971 United States Karl Striedieck
1972 Poland Jan Wróblewski twice World Champion, 1965 Open and 1972 Standard Class
1973 United Kingdom Ann Welch
1974 Switzerland August Hug
1975 Poland Adela Dankowska for her world records & winning the 1975 International Women's Gliding Competition
1976 Netherlands Louis A. de Lange
1977 United States George B. Moffat, Jr.
1978 Germany Helmut Reichmann
1980 Austria Hans Wolf
1981 United Kingdom George Lee World gliding champion on three consecutive occasions
1982 Switzerland Hans Nietlispach
1984 Australia C.E. Wallington
1985 New Zealand Sholto Hamilton Georgeson
1986 United States Dick Johnson
1987 Finland Juhani Horma
1988 Australia Ingo Renner
1990 Germany Fred Weinholtz
1991 New Zealand Raymond W. Lynskey
1992 Poland Franciszek Kępka
1993 United States Bernald S. Smith
1994 New Zealand Terrence Delore
1995 Norway Tor Johannessen
1997 Germany Manfred Reinhardt
1998 United States Oran Nicks
1999 Czech Republic Hana Zejdova
2000 Germany Klaus Ohlmann
2001 United States James M. Payne
2002 New Zealand John Hamish Roake
2003 Italy Piero Morelli
2004 Poland Janusz Centka
2005 United Kingdom Ian Strachan
2006 Australia Alan Patching
2007 United Kingdom Derek Piggott
2008 France Roland Stuck
2009 New Zealand Ross Macintyre
2010 Germany Reiner Rose
2011 Italy Giorgio Galetto
2012 New Zealand Bob Henderson
2014        Not awarded
2015 Netherlands Loek Boermanns
2016 Germany Rainer Wienzek


  1. ^ "SSA Awards and SSA Recognized Awards - International Awards". Soaring Society of America. Retrieved 2011-02-22. 
  2. ^ "List of recipients of Lilienthal Medal". Fédération Aéronautique Internationale. Retrieved 2011-04-30. 
  3. ^

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