World record smashed in flight over Lubbock - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

World record smashed in flight over Lubbock

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

Two men broke a world record in a pair of flights that ended near Lubbock on July 3rd.

The US Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association announced on Sunday that Dustin Martin, US Hang Gliding Champion, and Jonny Durand, an Australian athlete, broke the record for powerless flight. They used hang gliders to cover 474 miles starting in Zapata, Texas and ending near Ralls, Texas.

The previous record had been 435 miles in a trip that also started in Zapata.

USHPA says Martin and Durand launched ten minutes apart, but flew most of the day together. The pilots flew downwind over the ground, sometimes approaching speeds of 80 mph.

Hang gliders use rising currents of air to higher. Then they use a tailwind to cover distance.

USHPA says clouds act like gas stations in the sky, enabling pilots gain height before turning downwind.

"In the history of human endeavors, no one has ever flown farther without a motor, using only the wind, sun and a small wing overhead," says David Glover, past USHPA President. "This is an historic moment in the history of aviation."

Copyright 2012 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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