Thu, Oct 14, 2010
Independent Promoter Says Red Bull "Stole" His Plans
It would take a certain kind of attitude to step out of the
gondola of a weather balloon on the fringe of space with nothing
but years of planning, a pressure suit, and a parachute to
back you up, but that is exactly what Austrian Felix Baumgartner
had been planning as part of the Red Bull Stratos Project. During
the freefall, Baumgartner had hoped to become to first skydiver to
break the sound barrier, traveling over 760 miles per hour
during the 23-mile drop.
Felix Baumgartner File Photo
But a lawsuit has caused plans for the attempt to be shelved.
Fox News reports that promoter Daniel Hogan filed the suit in
April, saying Red Bull had stolen plans for his "Space Dive", which
he says he pitched to the company in 2004.
In a news release on the Red Bull Stratos Project website, the
company says "Felix Baumgartner had been scheduled to undertake a
stratospheric balloon flight to 120,000 feet and attempt a freefall
jump that would, for the first time, reach supersonic speeds as
well as deliver valuable scientific data.
"Despite the fact that many other people over the past 50 years
have tried to break Colonel (Ret.) Joe Kittinger's record, and that
other individuals have sought to work with Red Bull in an attempt
to break his record, Mr. Hogan claims to own certain rights to the
project and filed a multi million dollar lawsuit earlier this year
in a Californian court. Red Bull has acted appropriately in its
prior dealings with Mr. Hogan, and will demonstrate this as the
case progresses. Due to the lawsuit, we have decided to stop the
project until this case has been resolved."
The complaint filed by Hogan indicates that the "daredevil
stunt" could be worth as much as $625 million in advertising.
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