Felix Baumgartner goes drifting in a helicopter
Felix Baumgartner rose to fame in 2012 by setting a new record for high-altitude skydiving. The Austrian jumped from an altitude of 128,100 ft (39,045 m) over Roswell, New Mexico, US. His latest stunt saw him at the controls of a Bolkov BO105 aerobatic helicopter, seeing how closely he could track a drift car.
Baumgartner's famous skydive saw him achieve speeds of 833.9 mph (1,342.8 km/h) during his freefall descent and had all sorts of potential for danger. Indeed, at one point he went into a spin that could have resulted in disaster, but he was able to recover. This recent stunt was by no means as high-speed, but still held a significant element of danger.
The so-called "heli-drifting" saw Baumgartner tracking Polish drift racer Jakub Przygoński, who was driving a 1,000 hp Toyota GT 86. It took place at Debrzno Airfield, a former Polish Air Force base, which was able to provide the large open space that was required. In addition to coordinating with each other, Baumgartner and Przygoński had to coordinate with the film crew to ensure that the action could be captured safely, to a high standard and without unnecessary additional takes.
During a video of the stunt, Baumgartner can be seen chasing Przygoński along a runway a matter of feet from the ground and from Przygoński's Toyota. As Przygoński throws his car into drifts, Baumgartner follows suit by tilting the Bolkov helicopter into the turns.
The two can also be seen circling a military vehicle towing a plane and at one point they face up before Baumgartner knocks a target off the top of the stationary Toyota. "He was so close that he hit the GoPro camera attached to my car," says Przygoński. "The helicopter was at 160 km/h (99 mph) about 30 cm (11.8 in) above my head and if I'm honest it was a pretty scary moment."
The video below shows the performance.
Source: Red Bull