Flugtag Record Set

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This is one record you'll never see in any official chronicles of aviation achievements but the team behind Vancouver's Big Shooter couldn't be happier. The "aircraft" managed to stagger about 86 feet before falling into False Creek, an ocean inlet in Vancouver's downtown core. That was good for a North American record for Flugtag (means flying day in German), which is sponsored by Red Bull (yes, the same Red Bull that sponsors those nifty aerobatic races), and is held in about 40 cities worldwide each year. "When I left the flight deck I thought I'm really flying. And while I'm excited about setting a new record, I know we can fly at least 40 feet further," pilot Mike Perreten is quoted as saying in a news release. Under Flugtag rules, competitors are required to dress outrageously and design "aircraft" that usually meet that definition only for the few seconds that they take to tumble into the water from the 30-foot-high launch platform. The Vancouver event drew 31 entries, including a group from the prairie province of Saskatchewan which proved conclusively that grain elevators can't fly. There were no reports of injuries.