As soon as I heard Red Bull had chosen Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront to stage their legendary Flugtag event – you know, the one where entrants dress up in funny costumes, then perform insane short skits, before pranging their whacky homebuilt flying machines into the drink to the delight of the crowd – I just knew it was going to be the event of the year. I wasn’t disappointed. Neither was the over 220 000-strong crowd.
Team #BullsEye, managing to cover the furthest distance with their flight of 17,09 metres, took top honours. However, just because they won on the day, don’t think they stole the show. Without a doubt, that accolade goes to all 41 teams who, after months of dedicated preparation, devised some of the most flamboyant non-flying-machines any of us had ever seen. Some plummeted like bricks, some broke apart in mid-air and some flipped, landing with a splash upside-down. Heck, some didn’t even make it off the ramp before toppling off their launch platforms and breaking apart to the horror of their gaudily-clad four-man teams. Man, was it a laugh.
But it wasn’t only the teams and their crazy flying machines that dazzled the crowd. Aerobatic pilot Glen Dell put on a hair-raising show in his Red Bull Extra 300, showing the wannabe fliers how it actually gets done. And Frenchman Franky Zapata donned his FlyBoard and performed for the crowd, leaving everyone gobsmacked with what only can be best described as hydro-propelled aerobatics.
If you weren’t there, or considered entering but didn’t get around to it, here are some photos to whet your appetite for the next event. For more information visit www.redbullflugtag.co.za