Two hot-air balloonists in the United States set a new world record for flight across water on Friday (17 January).
SV Engine being started
GVS Balloon being inflated (2 shots)
SV&GV Balloonists in balloon (2 shots)
CU Flames inside balloon
GV Balloon taking off and in flight with voice over (5 shots)
GVS Balloon about to land (3 shots)
TRANSCRIPT: LYNN JONES: REPORTER: "If you were going to attack a new world record in a hot air balloon you probably wouldn't pick a cold January morning with temperatures close to zero. But if you were a veteran balloonist, you would. Because believe it or not the colder weather makes a balloon easier to fly. So this shivering crowd of people gathered to prepare for a flight of eighty miles across Lake Michigan from Chicago to South Haven, Michigan. Two men, Steve Neulander and Paul Woessner took off in their vehicle - called "The Magnificent rotator" to fly farther than anyone has every flown across water in a balloon. They had what they say is a magnificent experiences
BALLOONIST VOICE OVER: "You get a tremendous feeling of freedom when you leave the ground - you are leaving all kinds of problems - you are up and alone, you are a free spirit, you are controlling an object that is seven storeys high, you get a great deal of satisfaction out of something like this. I have been flying for about two years and every time I take off I can't help but smile - its just a great deal of fun and excitement and adventure. When you are flying a balloon, when you take off you never know where you are going, you may know like today I'm going east, I'll go across the lake, but I don't really know where I'm going - or what I'm going to meet when I get there, or what I'm going to do."
REPORTER: "They landed three hours and nineteen minutes later. across the lake in a field, just a few miles inland. A couple of frozen but happy world record holders."
EDITORS NOTE: The soundtrack with this film contains a voice-over description of the experience of balloon flight by one of the balloonists, and a commentary by TVN reporter Lynn Jones.
REPORTER: LYNN JONES
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Two hot-air balloonists in the United States set a new world record for flight across water on Friday (17 January).
Steve Neulander and Paul Woessner set off to fly across Lake Michigan from Chicago to South Haven. Michigan in their new balloon 'The magnificent Rotator" on the coldest morning the weather forecasters could predict. Temperatures close to zero might not be everybody's idea of paradise, but to veteran balloonists it means that their vehicle is easier to fly.
And the flying itself is almost more important to them than any records they might break. One of the balloonists described the experience as being like a "free spirit" and said that every time he takes off he "can't help but smile."
But three hours and nineteen minutes after they left the ground Steve Neulander and Paul Woessner were frozen but happy world record holders with a flight of eighty miles (about 129 kilometres) across water.