Dubai: Two French daredevils broke a Guinness World Record for the highest Base jump after jumping from the pinnacle of the Burj Khalifa and spiralling down the world’s tallest man-made structure.
Professional base jumpers Vince Reffet and Fred Fugen broke the record on Monday between 6am and 9am after performing two base jumps from the top of the 828-metre Burj Khalifa in Downtown Dubai. Emirati jumpers Nasser Al Neyadi and Omar Al Hegelan held the previous world record after jumping 672 metres down the tower in 2010.
Base jumping is an acronym for an extreme sport of jumping from a building, antennae, span or bridges, and Earth (referring to cliffs or mountains). It is a variation of skydiving, but is considered more dangerous because it is done at a lower altitude and jumpers have obstacles along the way.
A video of the jump was released on Wednesday, which showed Reffet and Fugen doing two wing-suit jumps from a three-metre by one-metre platform on top of the tower with the sunrise as their backdrop. The duo sported yellow jumpsuits with inflatable pressurised nylon cells that act as wings to help jumpers glide in the air like birds.
“We feel happy for breaking the world record, but it wasn’t the main goal. We’ve been dreaming about base jumping from this special place, this unique place for three years now,” Fugen, 34, who has done 600 base jumps since 2003, told Gulf News.
The duo said it took them a year to prepare for the record jump through the help of SkyDive Dubai. The jump was done early morning Monday to minimise dangers from strong wind speeds at the tower.
“We didn’t leave any room for error. We planned everything. For sure we were scared at first but we transformed that fear into power to achieve our goal,” Reffet, who has done between 600 and 700 base jumps, told Gulf News.
This is the second Guinness World Record organised and facilitated by SkyDive Dubai in a month. On April 5, professional skydiver Ernesto Gainza’s broke the world record for the smallest parachute jump at just 35 square feet.