Sunday, October 17, 2010

Record Breaking 120,000 Foot Jump Postponed Over Lawsuit

The suit by Daniel Hogan, which has at least temporarily derailed the record breaking jump, claims that the basis for the current plans were his proposal that Red Bull initially rejected.

"Red Bull has pulled the plug on its plan to have daredevil Felix Baumgartner skydive from the edge of space, because it is being sued by a California promoter who says Red Bull stole his idea.

Baumgartner planned to ride a balloon called Stratos to an altitude of 120,000 feet and step into the void, breaking the record Air Force Col. Joe Kittinger set in 1960 when he jumped from 102,800 feet. Red Bull claimed the jump was a scientific pursuit to study the effects of a supersonic fall on the human body, but this being Red Bull you know publicity was a big part of it.

Promoter Daniel Hogan claims he pitched the idea to Red Bull in 2004 and provided a detailed plan, only to have Red Bull tell him, “Thanks, but no” about a year later. He sued in April, claiming Red Bull used his proposal as the basis for the Red Bull Stratos jump. The suit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, claims the stunt would be worth $375 million to $625 million in advertising revenue, according to Courthouse News Service.

Red Bull insists it has done nothing wrong but is stopping the program.

“Despite the fact that many other people over the past 50 years have tried to break Colonel (Ret.) Joe Kittinger’s record, and that other individuals have sought to work with Red Bull in an attempt to break his record, Mr. Hogan claims to own certain rights to the project and filed a multimillion dollar lawsuit earlier this year in a Californian court,” the company said. “Red Bull has acted appropriately in its prior dealings with Mr. Hogan, and will demonstrate this as the case progresses. Due to the lawsuit, we have decided to stop the project until this case has been resolved.”

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