Red Bull Flugtag 2010, Caddebostan Park, Istanbul

Hmm, Interesting design. ...but will it fly?

It's the beginning of summer in Istanbul and the silly season has started. On Sunday we went to Caddebostan Park to watch the Red Bull Flugtag. This is an event where the participants have to build a flying craft, powered by a human. They then launch their flying machine from a height of 30ft, over the sea. This is so they don't do too much damage to themselves when the inevitable happens and gravity takes over. 40 teams competed against each other and were judged on distance, creativity and showmanship.

Will this fly? ...perhaps not.

Well, birds do fly ...normally.

Could this be held together by Scotch tape?

Preparing for take off! It looks convincing, 
although it could be designed for a Kamikaze pilot.

There is a strict criteria for entry, although you wouldn't guess from a cursory glance. The rules state that, "Every flying machine must have a maximum wingspan of just over 9 metres (30ft for the unconverted), a maximum weight, including pilot, of 204kg (450lbs) and be powered by muscle, gravity or imagination." Of course, it's a given that they will probably all end up in water, so the craft must be unsinkable, built from environmentally friendly materials, and without any loose parts that could impede another team's flying machine.

Interestingly, some of these contraptions actually manage to fly. The record was set in the Flugtag 2000 event in Austria, when one design managed to fly for 59.4 metres.

Will he do it?

...no he won't! (Fortunately he missed the suicidal photographer on the end of the pier.)

A huge crowd came to watch.

Another hopeful sets off...

... only to land in the drink!

Elizabeth Coughlan

1 comment:

  1. Hi there,

    I am the kamikaze pilot you have mentioned. Very nice pictures thanks a lot:) I would love to receive larger versions of em. You can send to canerkaptanoglu@gmail.com

    best regards,

    Designer and Pilot of marshall kamikaze


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