Wingsuit man Gary Connery to jump 2,400ft without parachute in death-defying stunt

Gabrielle Leslie

A British daredevil is about to take one giant leap for eccentricity and jump out of a helicopter in a wingsuit without using a parachute to land on a pile of cardboard boxes.

Fearless Gary Connery, 42, from Henley-on-Thames, will let gravity take control when he leaps from a height of 2,400ft with only a stack of boxes to break his fall.

The professional stuntman has starred in action films such as ‘Johnny English Reborn’, ‘Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull,’ and ‘Batman Begins’ - but he's never faced a challenge like this.

After eight years of practicing wingsuit jumping from famous landmarks such as the London Eye and the Eiffel Tower in France, this is by far his biggest stunt yet.

Gary helped develop the suit which will be used for the flight - making it a first of its kind from a technical point of view. Typically these suits are designed to fly as fast as possible but Gary has engineered a suit which will enable him to fly at slightly slower speeds, allowing him to land without a parachute.

At present, the Civil Aviation Authority is making Gary keep the exact location of his jump under wraps for public safety reasons, but he did reveal his flight will fall within a 1.4km radius around Henley-on-Thames.

With an impressive 880 skydives and 450 Base jumps under his belt,  Gary will free fall for three seconds before his suit allows him to fly.

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He will experience a 60 mph forward speed with a 22mph vertical descent rate – before he brings the speed down slowly.

Approximately 200ft away from his landing target - a 12ft deep, 350-ftx 45-ft cardboard runway - he must flare his wingsuit to bring his gliding speed down to 50mph and his vertical falling speed to 15mph.

The whole flight is due to last about 50 seconds.

Speaking about his madcap quest, father-of-two Gary told Yahoo! News: "This is an absolutely 100% world first. No one has ever attempted it before and I will do it . My wife and kids think it’s a great idea and are very supportive.

"I will drop 2,400ft approximately a mile from my target, then accelerate to 50 to 60 mph. The wingsuit , which is like a double-skinned airbed, will slow me down. Then I will approach the landing with a big smile on my face.

"Then it will be back to the café for tea, cakes and champagne."

Gary said he would wear a parachute under his suit as back-up - telling us that it was vital in case there was a freak gust of wind.

He has already spent the last few weeks leaping from the mountain tops of Switzerland and working on the precision and accuracy of his wingsuit.

He said: “I am excited and overwhelmed at the prospect of sticking a new post in the runway of aviation history. I am 100% confident of my abilities and methods to achieve this landing on what will become a historic day."

Weather permitting the world record attempt will take place in the next few days.