Record skydive honours Thai King

A huge international team of skydivers has claimed its second world record in four days in Thailand.

    The record leap signified the Thai King's 60 year rule

    A total of 960 skydivers from 31 countries jumped over Bangkok's new international airport in honour of Bhumibol Adulyadej, the Thai King.

    If certified it will be a new record for a mass freefall and the second landmark in a week for World Team '06, an informal association of skydiving enthusiasts from all over the world.

    On Wednesday, the team set a new world record of 400 people holding hands in a midair free-fall formation in northeastern Thailand, an accomplishment certified by

    judges from the Federation Aeronautique Internationale.

    Saturday's jump over the new Suvarnabhumi Airport, which will open later this year, saw 450 World Team members and 510 members of the Thai armed forces and police jump from seven C-130 Hercules aircraft, including one each provided by the Singaporean and Malaysian air forces.

    Track record

    Karina Willerup, a spokeswoman for the World Team, said the records from the jump would be submitted to the Guinness Book of World Records.

    The events were dubbed as the Royal Sky Celebration 2006 by organisers, as they were carried out to honour the 78-year-old King Bhumibol, the world's longest-reigning monarch.

    The figure of 960 people taking part in Saturday's jump was significant. It represents King Bhumibol as the ninth king of Thailand's Chakri dynasty, and this year is the 60th anniversary of his accession to the throne.

    The World Team's recent jumps broke its own records, set by a formation jump of 357 skydivers over Takhli, Thailand, in February 2004, and a mass freefall jump of 672 skydivers over Bangkok in January 2004.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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