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1st Hoverboard Ride Over English Channel
France's Flying Inventor Franky Zapata
Source: Zapata flying into Dover, England
French Inventor Goes 106 MPH
French inventor Franky Zapata successfully crossed the English Channel today on a jet powered hoverboard that he invented. It's a 22 mile trip that took him 22 minutes from Sangatte, France to Dover, England. At times he reached speeds of 106 mph.
Second Try Was the Charm
For Zapata, the second attempt brought success. In late July, he made his first attempt but fell into the water when trying to land on a refueling platform in the middle of the Channel. He missed it by inches. During today's successful flight, he stopped once to refuel because he started the journey with just 10 minutes worth of fuel. When he landed in Dover, he commented: "We made the machine 3 years ago and now we've crossed the Channel. It's crazy!"
Zapata the inventor has created Zapata Industries. He invented the Flyboard which uses a water jet to propel the rider into the air, behind and tethered to a boat. He's also invented the Flyboard Air that uses four jet engines to power the rider through the air untethered.
Interest and Competition
There's a lot of interest in this emerging personal travel technology including from the defense industry. And there's fascinating competition including from English inventor Richard Browning. He's the inventor of the Jet Suit that enables you to take off in flight powered by six jet engines strapped to your arms.
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