Russian extreme sports dynamo Valery Rozov, hand in glove with Red Bull and the Extreme Russian Project, pulled off a stunning stunt. He became the first man to wingsuit fly into the mouth of an active volcano and land in its crater. Cocky and confident, he exited the helicopter with a backward salto and flew into the waiting mouth of Mutnovs (Smaragdmedia) – an active volcano on Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula.
“After the Russian made the safe landing in the crater, there was no time to celebrate because it was vital to quickly get back out on account of the poisonous gases contained in the volcano’s steam. Rozov was quickly pulled out of the crater with the help of a rope. Only later after returning safely to the base camp did the Russian celebrate the successful landing with his team in the hotel’s own geyser.”
45-year-old multitalented extreme sportsman, Valery Rozov is the founder and leading member of the Russian Extreme Project (REP) – the only independent team in Russia whose goal is to organize unique sports expeditions and events. The company was founded in 2000 and a highly-qualified team of extreme athletes, including himself, was gathered to make the perfect extreme team.
Rozov’s areas of expertise are climbing, BASE jumping, wingsuit flying and the comparatively recent discipline pretty well invented by him – BASE CLIMBING… more on this one later.
The pyschological reasoning behind extreme sports is always being questioned, prodded, probed and wondered about, but as psychologist Dr. Eric Brymer from the Queensland University of Technology says “The reason (people do extreme sports) is because they understand the environment and the task and their own level of skill and ability – that is emotional, physical, psychological – so well, they are able to control the situation to such a high level that risk really doesn’t come into it.”
After looking at levels of risk taken in sports like sky diving, base jumping and big wave surfing, he has his doubts as to whether the participants of these sports are really taking an unacceptable level of risk. Jumping off the top of a mountain in a suit fitted with wings might sound like a death wish to most people, but there are others who call it the experience of a lifetime and a way to make a living.
Glenn Singleman, BASEjumper and wingsuit flyer, says “Contrary to popular belief, we don’t have a death wish, but we are motivated, driven people with high ambition and we want to know what’s possible.The real question is, ‘when you go beyond your fears, what is possible? What can we use technology to achieve?’ And with the level of technology that’s around now, you can do truly amazing things.”