There are people in life who love to take risks. For fun, for adrenaline, for various reasons, they do something out of the ordinary that ends up capturing the attention of those who, for some reason or another, could not be in their shoes. One of these people is the Italian pilot Darío Costa, who last weekend he achieved five Guinness records By piloting your stunt plane through two tunnels on a Turkish highway.
With more than two decades of flight experience and more than 5,000 hours in the air, many of them doing stunts, Darío Costa thought it was time to do something different. But, what has not yet been done since the beginnings of aviation until now? Fly an aircraft in a closed space of concrete walls was the answer. Certainly a challenge that so far had not been much disputed.
This is how Darío Costa took off with his plane at dawn on Saturday, September 4, to carry out the feat on the Northern Marmara highway east of Istanbul. The flight began with its passage through the shortest tunnel, the Çatalca-2, to then rise through the air and submerge again in the Çatalca-1 of 1,610 m.
A versatile aircraft, but an enormously complicated challenge
Credit: Red Bull
Red Bull, a sponsor of the event, notes that changes in airflow, combined with the aircraft’s responsive steering, required reaction times of less than 250 milliseconds. “Everything seemed to be happening very fast, but when I came out of the first tunnel, the plane started to move to the right because of the crosswinds and in my head, everything slowed down at that moment,” explains Costa.
“I reacted and just focused on getting the plane back on the correct path to enter the other tunnel. Then, in my mind, everything accelerated again, “continued the experienced pilot who in the test, which lasted just 44.3 seconds in total, reached an average of 245 km / h. A fairly high speed, by the way, for a place where only cars should pass and not an airplane.
Costa received the official Guinness Record certificate for his flight, the longest tunnel ever traveled by a plane. In addition, he reached four other records: the first airplane flight through a tunnel; Longer flight under a solid obstacle; first plane flight through two tunnels and first plane take-off in a tunnel.
The aircraft used by Costa was a Zivko Edge 540, a stunt and racing aircraft designed and built in the United States. One of its most notable features is that it has the highest thrust-per-weight in competition. In addition, it can reach a maximum speed of 426 km / h and a turning range of 420 ° / s.