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Sat, Sep 04, 2004

French Rocketeer Flies!

Yves Rossy zooms through sky with 9-foot wings, twin jet engines

Yves Rossy, French daredevil, has set yet another world record. This time, the wild and crazy guy has become the first man to fly horizontally with wings attached to a flight suit of his own design and two small jet engines.

The flight lasted four minutes, and took place over the city of Bex, Switzerland. Rossy, who had been trying to accomplish this feat for years, jumped out of a Pilatus Porter aircraft from 4,000 meters and glided down to 2,500 meters over some 30 seconds of free fall.

He then fired up his two Jet-Cat model aircraft turbine engines and, once the engines stabilized, throttled up. He soon levelled off at a cruise speed of a cool 115 mph or so. He even turned on his smoke system so that the cameras and ground crew could see him.

After four minutes, he encountered some heavy turbulence and decided to call it a day. He shut down the engines and deployed his parachute, making a safe landing and setting a new world record. And he still had half his fuel!



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