Joao Luis Veiga de Faria


"Hopefully I will learn a lot from the other X-Pyr pilots"

Pilot: Joao Veiga
Nationality: Portuguese
Birth Date: 12.01.1981
City: Alicante
Country: Spain
Job: IT engineer
Glider: GIN GTO
Harness: GIN Genie X-Alps
Assistant: Anna Zietek
Nationality: Polish
Birth Date: 16.07.1979
City: Alicante
Country: Spain


What is your greatest sporting success?
Second place in the Federation Cup Open FAI 2 Yelmo 2015 Serial class.

When and why did you start paragliding?
I used to dream about flying when I was little. When I watched the first paragliders flying over Linhares da Beira I thought: I have to be up there. The plan started taking place and as soon as I finished my degree I started learning how to fly. I have to thank my mother for my first paraglider and ever since then I haven't stopped flying.

What is your mountaineering experience?
I practise hiking since I was very young. In the last years I have done more climbing and alpine walking. I have climbed several peaks in the Alps and the Andes.The highest one was the Illimani in Bolívia.

What does your typical training week consist of?
I normally run 8/10 km three times a week. On weekends I try to do a longer and steeper route, and I fly down if possible. I try to fly at least 3 times a week with one or two XCs if the meteo allows it.

What are your best and worst sporting memories?
The best:One flight from Sierra da Estrela (Portugal) to Arevalo (Spain). Apart from being my first +200 km flight I ended up with the town's Mayor who was amazed and didn't understand how it was possible to fly that far without engine.
The worst: to watch a friend's paragliding accident.

Why did you choose X-Pyr?
As well as combining both of my biggest passions, mountain and flying, it is a demanding task and for sure I will learn a lot from it. I am also looking forward to compete beside some of the best pilots in the world. Hopefully I will learn a lot from them.

Have you participated on X-Pyr before?

Have you flown in the Pyrenees before?
Yes. In national competitions and also free flying.

What will your strategy be during the race?
To fly as much as possible. I will use a flexible strategy trying to adapt each time to physical and meterological conditions, for that I will try to be in contact with my assistant all the time.

What excites you most about X-Pyr?
The adventure.

What scares you the most about the event?
Strong wind at take off and having to decide whether or not I should fly.

Why will he make a good assistant?
Because she's got an ability to adjust to different environments and is a good problem solver, and because she motivates me.