Franky Zapata managed to cross the English Channel on his flying machine


The Frenchman reached St Margaret’s Bay in 21 minutes in his second attempt

© Benoît Denet

French “flying man” Franky Zapata took off from Sangatte in the north of France on Sunday, 4 August 2019 at 08:15 local time (0615 GMT) on his “Flyboard” for his second attempt to cross the Channel, ten days after his failure.

About 24 minutes later (07:39 local time, 0639 GMT), the 40-year-old man landed at St. Margaret’s Bay in Dover on the south coast of England, having refuelled his kerosene-powered machine while landing on a boat underway.

It was a difficult refuelling (from 0628 to 0631 GMT), as on his first attempt. It was “still complicated because the boat was not immobile, it was moving towards me,” he explained when he arrived.

Very moved, the inventor wished to thank his team. “They did a crazy job. What matters is not to have made a historic feat, it is the challenge that we realised with my team. It was so hard!


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