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A Hungarian pilot flew between the walls of the Corinth Canal

27 March 2014 / 14:03:53  GRReporter
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Hungarian Peter Besenyei, an inspirer of the aerobatics Red Bull Air Race championship, crossed the Corinth Canal by plane. He completed the risky 6.4 kilometre-long-flight on Wednesday, 26 March.
The weather in the region favoured the realization of the bold venture that lasted 20 minutes. Besenyei flew between the walls of the Canal by plane Extra 300S D-EFBY, which has 300+ horsepower, a weight of 605 kg, length 6.6 m and wingspan of 8 m.

The crossing of the historic Canal was related to significant technical difficulties, even for an experienced pilot with thousands of flight hours. Nevertheless, Besenyei was able to offer viewers a breathtaking view.

Having passed through the isthmus, completing a precise aligned flight, the pilot increased the degree of difficulty and performed a number of aerial tricks and risky manoeuvres that seemed unthinkable because of the limited space between the walls of the Canal.

Then the pilot performed a passage under the old bridge over the Corinth canal followed by a sharp rise in the sky and a vertical descent to the isthmus. Besenyei finished his performance with two impressive loops around the bridge of the station for biological treatment of wastewater.

"A dream has come true. The Corinth Canal, a historical place in Greece, had been a challenge for me for a long time. It feels great to be in this beautiful country, full of rich history and I especially enjoyed this unique experience," said the pilot after the flight.

The Corinth Canal connects the Saronic Gulf with the Gulf of Corinth in the region of the Isthmus of Corinth. It was built between 1880 and 1893 and it is 6.346 m long, 24.6 m wide at sea level and 21.3 m at the bottom. Its depth varies from 7.5 to 8 metres.

In ancient times, between the wall of the isthmus and its enclosure, there was a paved cart-track road, Diolkos, used to transfer goods and small ships from east to west, between the two gulfs, in order to avoid sailing round the entire Peloponnese.

The idea of ​​building a canal dates back to Periander (602 BC). The first who tried to implement it was Roman Emperor Nero (66 AD), under the design by his predecessors Julius Caesar and Caligula. After his death, Herod Atticus continued for a while the attempts to build it but quickly abandoned them.

Tags: SportsFlightCorinth CanalPeter Besenyei
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