October 14, 2010
On Tuesday, the energy drink giant Red Bull said it was postponing its Stratos effort, in which Felix Baumgartener will try to break Joe Kittinger’s 1960 free-fall record, until a lawsuit is settled. Courthouse News Service reported in April that Daniel Hogan was suing Red Bull for stealing his SpaceDive idea, which he pitched to the company in 2004,complete with a team comprising a balloon manufacturer, spacesuit developer, flight surgeon, and filmmaker. Red Bull informed Hogan in 2005 that it “would not like to continue our joint work on the SpaceDive project.” (The company debuted its Stratos effort last January.)
What this postponement might mean for other contenders is at the moment unclear. The United States’ Cheryl Stearns and Britain’s Steve Truglia have long campaigned to make the jump, but both seem to have fallen out for lack of funding.
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