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SKYDIVER TAKES A SHOT AT BALLOON RECORD

Skydiver takes a shot at balloon record

A James Bond lookalike suspended 7,500ft in the air by 300 balloons has landed back on terra firma after shooting each one with a gun.

Mike Howard, dressed in a dinner jacket, was hoping to rise 11,000ft during a world record attempt at Bristol's International Balloon Fiesta.

He failed to reach his target due to heavy cloud cover and the danger of drifting into airspace, but said he was keen to try again in the near future.

The skydiver cut himself free from a regular hot air balloon at a height of around 3,000ft and then ascended another 4,500ft clutching the balloons.

Aided by oxygen equipment, the 36-year-old used a replica Bond Walther PPK pistol to shoot the balloons when he needed to come back down.

The British Airways pilot already holds several Guinness World Records including the highest skywalk between two hot air balloons with no parachute at 19,000ft and the highest trapeze at 21,000ft.

Mr Howard, from Timperley, south Manchester, said: "It was great fun and it felt very different from anything I've done before. I felt like Winnie the Pooh - it was like being a kid all over again and very exciting.

"I was a little disappointed we didn't beat the record but there was nothing we could do because of the cloud and the risk of crossing into air space. But it all went swimmingly, I ascended about 15 miles, shooting the balloons was fun and with the right weather I am keen to try again soon."

The hot air balloon carrying Mr Howard was flown by Clive Bailey, a skydiver and balloonist who directed David Hempleman-Adams' world record breaking balloon flight to the North Pole.
 

SKYDIVER TAKES A SHOT AT BALLOON RECORD






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