Seriously ‘hot’ competition at Budapest Runway Run

Temperatures in the high-30s couldn’t quash the enthusiasm of the 1,100 runners entered into this year’s Budapest Runway Run. The annual air transport industry’s 10km charity race was held on Runway 13R-31L of Budapest Airport, Saturday 31 August raising more than €50,000 all in the name of charity.

New teams and fresh faces took the podium at this year’s air transport industry’s 10km charity race as ASL Airlines claimed the coveted trophy of ‘The Fastest Airline in the World’, taking the title from 2014, 2016 & 2018 winners Aer Lingus – who conveniently claim they only win in even-numbered years! Held annually at the end of summer on Runway 13R-31L of Budapest Airport, Berlin Airports also entered the winners roll-call for the first time and stole the crown from Athens to take home ‘Fastest Airport in the World’. Other top awards were proudly won by SITA – ‘Fastest Aviation Business Services Team’; Weco-Travel – ‘Fastest Travel Enterprise Team’; and Excess Baggage – ‘Fastest Airport Concessionaire Team’.

Jost Lammers, outgoing CEO, Budapest Airport said: “It’s been an absolute honour to be part of such a rare aviation and sporting event for the last seven years and witness a multitude of runners from our community come together in this unique way.” Incoming CEO, Dr. Rolf Schnitzler claimed: “I have seen first-hand that the Runway Run has become a fantastic tradition and can say without doubt that we expect to build on the foundations laid so we will start preparing for Runway Run 2020 very soon!” Watch this space for next year’s date announcement!

Of course this isn’t just about the awesome athletes of the aviation community who come together every year but also about the donation of all entry fees being donated to’s chosen charity Anthony Nolan – in remembrance of our publisher Paul Hogan’s daughter Brontë who fought a brave battle against leukaemia – and Budapest’s selected beneficiary SUHANJ! Foundation. More than €170,000 has been raised over the last six years and that’s without this year’s euros and cents being verified and adjudicated.

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank the unfailing support of each and every runner. We’re proud to say we bought together another great selection of representatives from airlines including winners ASL Airlines, Aer Lingus, Air France, American Airlines, Cargolux, Czech Airlines, Emirates, KLM, Korean Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Norwegian Air Shuttle, Qatar Airways, Swiftair, SWISS, Virgin Atlantic Airways and Wizz Air, while the airport listing included first-timers Birmingham, trophy winners Berlin, London Luton, Munich, Nürnberg, Vienna and of course the host, Budapest. Others joining us from the aviation community for the fantastic experience included our closely-held sponsors Airbus, AviaDev, AviAlliance, CAE Engineering, Flightfox, HungaroControl, and other main sponsors KPMG and Mercedes Benz Hungary among many, many more.

Full to capacity (for obvious security reasons) 1,100 participants took part in the seventh Budapest Runway Run on Saturday 31 August in soaring temperatures reaching the high-30s. The normally busy Tarmac of Budapest Airport’s Runway 13R/31L closed to hold the annual event which consists of 5km and 10km race distances, as well as 1.5km for children.

New to the podium this year and stealing the trophies from previous winners were ASL Airlines ‘Fastest Airline in the World’, Berlin Airports ‘Fastest Airport in the World’, and SITA ‘Fastest Aviation Business Services Team’.

We couldn’t do it without them! While we are thankful to each and every runner for their support, our special thanks has to go to the main sponsors of the event who not only join us on the runway, have fantastic presence at Race HQ (Budapest Airport’s historic Terminal 1), but who generously donate to the chosen charities of the event. Airbus, KMPG, Mercedes Benz Hungary and Qatar Airways for being headline sponsors and also BFTK Budapest Festival and Tourism Centre, Heinemann Duty Free Hungary, Primavera, SITA, Smarteq, SSP, Travelport and Z+Z – we thank you and the charities thank you!

All participants in the race also receive the “Bron’s Medal,” sported here by some of the Budapest Aviation Development Team. The medals are named for Brontë “Bron” Hogan, the late-12 year-old daughter of Paul Hogan, the publisher of, seen here pushing SUHANJ! Foundation’s CEO, Alexandra Salamon’s (runner 1046) own son Erik for the first part on the course: “I’m so proud to be part of something which is not only a fantastic experience thanks to Budapest Airport, but an event which brings the aviation community together in such an extraordinary way. It’s an honour and a privilege each year to meet like-minded people who step up to take on the challenge for such amazing charities.”

One happy CCO! Kam Jandu, an experienced marathon runner who hung up his 26.2 miler trainers this year after completing 10 marathons, competed once again in the 10km race among his fellow aviators. Jandu, seen here (standing, fourth from right) with the Budapest Airport team, who may yet raise the airport team winner’s trophy, are formidable in their energy and passion for developing one of the best airports in Central Eastern Europe.

Just a snippet behind the scenes of Race HQ: While the run itself is a quite clearly a huge part of the day, the run has become something of a social and networking event for all involved. From chill-out areas, massage zones and photo booths to the renowned after-party BBQ…Budapest Airport know how to host!

The teams who make this event what it is: From Aer Lingus’ continuous support and notorious enthusiasm whether they win or not, sponsors Qatar Airways, to fairly newcomers and its ever-growing team LOT Polish Airways, the Budapest Runway Run is something to be part of…see you there next year!?!


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