SANTA MONICA, Calif., Sept. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Taking off in Washington, D.C. and landing in Long Beach, Calif., with layovers in Miami, Chicago and Dallas/Fort Worth, National Red Bull Flugtag, the homemade flying craft competition, made history today by taking place in five cities in one day. Adding to the already-extraordinary day, the The Chicken Whisperers, a team of aerospace and mechanical engineers from Palo Alto, Calif., proved that chickens can indeed fly, soaring a staggering 258 feet and shattering the old world record, set in Germany in 2012, by 29 feet.
"I was lucky to catch a nice wind after takeoff and I was able to steer the craft, using grip-controlled rudders in the back of the structure, to go even further," said The Chicken Whisperers' pilot, Laura Shane.
As an event taking place for 12 years worldwide, never before has one country taken on the challenge of putting on five Red Bull Flugtags on one day. The feat was accomplished today as more than 366,000 spectators celebrated the last day of summer and packed the shores of five of America's most iconic cities making Red Bull Flugtag truly a national day for people to get with friends, build their own flying machines and take to the skies.
Red Bull Flugtag, "flying day" in German, is a competition that dares both the brave and brainy to design, build and pilot homemade flying machines off a 30-foot-high "flight deck" in front of tens of thousands of spectators. No ordinary flying competition, teams are not only judged on distance but also creativity and showmanship making the event equal parts inventive, inspiring, hilarious and all-around wacky.
More than 750 aspiring aviators composing more than 150 teams across the country took on the challenge with crafts that only their imaginations could dream up. The spectators saw an incredibly varied cast of characters perform atop the five flight decks before taking off with (oftentimes far-fetched) aspirations of flight, including lumberjacks from Vermont, dragon riders from Fort Lauderdale, firemen from Skokie, bullfighters from Fort Worth, pirates from California, and even unicorn hunters from Virginia.
1st Place - Harvest Bureau (New Holland, Penn.) 54 feet
2nd Place - Viking Army (New Jersey) 51 feet
3rd Place - Duck Hunt (Richmond, Va.) 51 feet
People's Choice - Made in 'Murica (McGaheysville, Va.) 36 feet
"We had high hopes and we knew we had a solid craft. Farmers work in the rain or shine and the result exceeded our expectations," said Harvest Bureau crew member Ryan Grabowski. "When we saw it take flight, it was a great feeling."
Southpoint Waterfront hosted the first Red Bull Flugtag held in our nation's capitol, and more than 10,000 ticketed spectators can now say they personally witnessed history.
1st Place - The Flugtag Flying Dead (Tampa, Fla.) 120 feet
2nd Place - Hard Rock Flying Legendary Burger (Orlando, Fla.) 57 feet
3rd Place - Team O'Daly's Mustache Ride (Mobile, Ala.) 69 feet
People's Choice - Gator Aviators (Gainesville, Fla.) 69 feet
"We had so many setbacks while building, but we finally caught some luck and good weather to finish what we really felt was a great craft," said Kevin Riley, captain of Team Flugtag Flying Dead. This is the team's third Red Bull Flugtag victory.
A crowd of 94,000 spectators on land and on water packed into Bayfront Park and Biscayne Bay to witness the fourth Red Bull Flugtag held in Miami.
1st Place - Texas Tomcats (Hallsville, Tex.) 72 feet
2nd Place - Ducktape Dynasty (Denton, Tex.) 42 feet
3rd Place - Texas Bull Fighters (Ft. Worth) 36 feet
People's Choice - Gas Monkey Garage (Dallas) 9 feet
"A whole lot of prep went into our craft. We worked some long, long nights," said Nathan O'Quinn, pilot of the mock F-14 Tomcat craft. "We were also lucky enough to get some serious wind straight off the flight deck that let us soar over the lake."
The event at Lake Carolyn at Las Colinas Urban Center drew more than 92,000 spectators.
1st Place - Chicago Duck Hunt (Chicago) 39 feet
2nd Place - The Bamzoniacs (Rochelle, Ill.) 57 feet
3rd Place - My Favorite Team (Highland Park, Ill.) 48 feet
People's Choice - Hell on Heels (Chicago) 42 feet
"We're so ecstatic and pumped about today, this trophy is going on our table tonight!" said Manuel Alfaro, whose five-person crew came together for a second chance at flight in the Windy City. "This is a life changing event, and we're so glad we go the opportunity to fly this year."
Burnham Park played host to Red Bull Flugtag Chicago for the first time. Despite a weather delay, more than 60,000 spectators gathered for the best in Midwest aviation action.
1st Place - The Chicken Whisperers (Palo Alto, Calif.) 258 feet *new world record!
2nd Place - Legendary Flying Machine (Long Beach, Calif.) 108 feet
3rd Place - Oakley Factory Pilots (Foothill Ranch, Calif.) 60 feet
People's Choice - Red, White and Brew (Reedley, Calif.) 48 feet
More than 110,000 spectators enjoyed a warm, sunny day at Long Beach's Rainbow Harbor, also host to a Red Bull Flugtag event in 2010, to watch aviation history.
For more information, including photos and video footage from this event and past Red Bull Flugtag events, visit www.redbullflugtagusa.com.
SOURCE Red Bull