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Ninety Paragliders Over Bali on September 9, 2009

Southern Skies Fill with Human Kites as 99 Paragliders Hover Over Bali's Ungasan Southern Peninsula.

(9/14/2009) In a successful effort to set a new "official" Indonesian record of 99 paragliders aloft at one time, pilots began leaping off the cliffs of Bali's southernmost Ungasan peninsula at 9:00 a.m. on September 9, 2009.

Drawing participation from paragliders both from Indonesia and abroad, the goal was to have 99 paraglider airborne at once, a feat that the judges determined was achieve at 12:05 p.m., some three hours after the first athlete became airborne.

The festivities surrounding the record breaking flight were conducted on a slightly somber note following the death of a 60-year old American, Ray Benson, who perished while paragliding on the peninsula one day before the mass flight. It is unclear if Benson was to be part of the group of international paragliders cooperating to set a new record.

Beritabali.com quoted the Manager of the Indonesian Record Museum (MURI), Paulus Pangka, who certified the that 99 paragliders had managed to be simultaneously aloft, saying, "the record for joint flight is hereby recorded in the Museum of Indonesian Records as record number 3907."

Not satisfied with breaking only one record in a day, an Indonesian athlete, Dedi Arifianto, set a longest flight record of 9 hours and 9 minutes, surpassing his record flight set on August 8, 2008 of 8 hours and 8 minutes.

Dare we ask, how does an hang-glider on an extended flight arrange a rest stop?