World's first ever Tandem Infinity Tumbling - THE STORY

The idea of performing the Infinity Tumbling with a passenger has probably flashed through the mind of all the acro pilots who already mastered this ultimate figure. Just like me and Gábor who started to dream about this a few years ago...
It was obvious that there is a big safety issue and that the right material will take extreme importance to succeed. Our glider that time, the Morpheus was a true Infinity machine but even way too aggressive and violent, did not seemed to be the ideal wing for that. After a brainstorming session together with U-Turn's designer Ernst Strobl back at the end of 2007, the plans of the Thriller was borned. The first prototype already proved that as we expected this canopy with it's softer, easier handling and still great dynamics might be the right toy for this project.

However with all the further developments it took 1.5 years to finish it for the market but as soon as it came out we turned the green light on! Ernst zoomed up the wing so that we both together can get more or less the same kg/m2 wing loading as when we are flying alone on 17/18m2's. The plans went into the production in August 2009 and the first piece of this unique glider, the first ever made real acro tandem paraglider, called the "Twin Force" arrived in November. The first test flights were very promising; all the basics acro tricks and helico connections were working perfectly but most importantly Rythmic SAT as well! But the long Alpine winter broke in and the low water temperatures, snow and bad weather stayed in the way of more serious training until May 2010, when we travelled to the perfect test location: Ölüdeniz, Türkey. All the gear was set up and ready to go: a Vonblon Papillon steerable tandem parachute and a secondary Sup'air tandem rescue, Sup'air harnesses and a special brake system which allows both the pilot and passanger to steer and brake the glider together. The reason for that was that we expected very high brake pressure forces during the entry and the exit of the Infinity, even so high that one person only might not be able to execute it safe.
Finally it was time to give it a real try! The first flight went great and with a Rythmic SAT we worked up our way from SAT till almost a vertical Infinity and made a few rotations more with good energy! It took really a lot of altitude because the brake was extremely hard and it was only possible to build it up slowly. But as we had good feeling about it we decided to go directly for the classical spiral-tumbling entries to save time and height. In the second flight we performed 2 perfect Infinity Tumblings with about 10-12 turns each, the glider worked perfectly! We pulled the brakes together to enter, I corrected the wing during the maneuver and we pulled the brakes together again to exit. But by the third revolution of the very next Tumble an explosion happened and in less than a tenth of a second we lost all 'A', 'B' and 'C' upper-gallery lines right when the glider was about to shoot in front of us!

Gábor reacted immediately and we were hanging under the reserve parachute in only 3 second! Thanks to the great teamwork we landed soft and dry on the sand beach with really mixed feelings: we knew that it is working, but we had no glider anymore...An immediate phone call to Ernst Strobl and 2 months more to wait for a new glider...Beginning of Jun we set the dates of the planned world premier for 6-8 August. The new baby arrived - a bit late - at the end of July with even more reinforcements and a strong kevlar line set with the gallery lines holding a total of 8.2 tons and main lines 5.2 tons!! At that time I was travelling in Norway and Hungary while Gábor was also working away from home so we only met again on the evening before the big day...
On Saturday 7th August we got a heli-ride up to the Chäserugg which is an amazing take-off spot 1800 meters (!) over the water surface of Walensee! Took of from the top of the cliff, arrived 1400 meters over the lake and then...a real dream came true as we started tumbling with our 31m2 Thriller Twin Force. Due to the super long lines the whole movement seems to be extremely slow, but still it is full of energy without any small sign of instability or loss of pressure! We made something like 45 revolutions, exited safe and high with several hundreds of meters left for some more tricks to kick-off for the spectators waiting in the landing area.
Thanks very much to everybody who was there to help us and of course our sponsors, without them it would not be possible:
U-Turn Paragliders, Red Bull, Ingersoll, Sup'air, Robair Gleitschirmschule

But the best thing is...this is a real milestone! The main goal of the whole project, the dream to be able to SHARE this amazing experience with anybody who is healthy, fit and heavy enough is now became reality!!! Are YOU going to be the next?

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