Tomorrow, October 14th the world finds out who’s going to compete in the 10th edition of the Red Bull X-Alps, which kicks off June 20th, 2021. We’ll find out which 33 athletes from around the globe get to spend most of their waking hours over the next 9 months getting physically and mentally prepared for what’s billed as the toughest adventure race on Earth.
During their six-week expedition to Pakistan this summer, Damien Lacaze and Antoine Girard traveled more than 1,500 kilometers in just 14 days of flight, making the second highest flight in the history of paragliding, bivouacked at more than 6,000 meters and attempted the ascent of Spantik, which rises to more than 7000 m. It was an adventure at the extreme boundaries of what is humanly possible.
Larry Tudor was known as the “Dark Prince” back in the day. We roll the clock way back to 1973 when Larry learned how to fly his first hanglider in the seated position (yep, pre-prone days) on a wing that got a worse glide ratio than today’s smallest speed wings. The stories in this episode are going to make your head spin. Remember when hangies flew the Owens every day in the summer? Guys tumbling out of the sky and not using reserves? Flying without instruments? Larry was the first person to fly over 200 miles (in 1983!) and was the first person to fly over 300 miles. His 308 mile record from Hobbs, New Mexico in 1994 wasn’t beaten for a decade. In the mid 80’s Larry was widely regarded as one of the best hang gliders in the world and this conversation covers a lot of awesome ground. Scary close calls, whorehouses, guns, cowboys, flying in tornados, trouble with the police, flying with air force bombers and early towing nightmares- this podcast is a glimpse into a crazy world of the pioneers who laid the ground in free flight.