He did it!
Have a look at Matt’s Facebook site http://www.facebook.com/RobbenIslandBalloonRun?fref=ts to see the evidence!
Don’t forget the all important donations http://www.balloonrun.com/
Matt will be taking off from Robben Island with 200 Helium Balloons tomorrow morning, with the aim of drifting with westerly wind over to Big Bay.
The baloons are approximately 100ft HIGH so it will be very hard to miss him!
RCYC are asking all sailors to get out on the water with your brunch and show your support to Matt and his team and whitness this amazing and very special feat.
Final steps before take-off: Robben Island Balloon Run aviator in South Africa ahead of daring cluster-balloon flight
Matt Silver-Vallance, aviator of the fast-approaching Robben Island Balloon Run, has landed in South Africa and is gearing up for his daring stunt. He will be flying from Robben Island to the mainland, using just a cluster of helium balloons in the colours of the South African flag, sometime between 1 and 27 April, weather dependent.
As the event draws closer, Silver-Vallance is making final preparations. He has been given the green light by the South African Civil Aviation Authority, as they are happy with all the safety precautions in place.
The eNCA climatologists are keeping a close eye on the weather and will be notifying the Robben Island Balloon Run team when conditions are ideal for the flight.
On the water, Silver-Vallance will have a support crew who will follow his progress from a number of boats, along with a team of long distance swimmers who will leave from Robben Island three hours before the pilot in order to meet him and assist with his landing. In addition, the Robben Island Balloon Run will enjoy the support of the Royal Cape Yacht Club, who will be out in full force on the day of the stunt.
The South African Navy has also come on board in support of the Balloon Run, and the SAS Umhloti, under the command of Commander Dieter Jones, will take part in the day???s events, following the trajectory of the flight.
Commander Jones is looking forward to being a part of the day???s events. He comments: ???I thought it was a crazy idea initially but it???s a worthy cause and it???s very exciting to be a part of the Robben Island Balloon Run. The Navy always likes to get involved in fundraising events, particularly given the connection to Mr Mandela???s legacy, and we are very happy to take part.???
The helium for the balloons, which is sponsored by Afrox, has already been transported to Robben Island ahead of the flight. It will take the inflation team about four hours to inflate the 200 five-foot diameter party balloons that Silver-Vallance will be attached to, so preparations will take place well in advance.
As all the elements fall into place, Silver-Vallance urges the public to keep an eye on the Facebook page and Twitter handle @Balloonbloke, as these are the platforms that will alert them to the date that everyone has been so looking forward to.
Two of the fundraising highlights so far have been an anonymous donation of R10 000, and Bergvliet High School raising R16 000 from a school day dedicated to raising funds. If members of the public want to donate, they are invited to make online donations at www.balloonrun.com or SMS the word ???balloon??? to 40301 in order to donate R20 to the Nelson Mandela Children???s Hospital.
“After four years of planning, the time is almost here!” says Silver-Vallance. “I can’t wait to take to the skies to raise funds for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital, which, in the end, is the most important part of the whole event.”
Note: If you would like to interview Matt before his flight, please contact Sarah Gurney on 021 486 8158 or . If you would like to attend the Balloon Run when it happens, please contact Sarah to apply for media accreditation. Accredited media will be notified the day before the event with confirmation as to when it will take place, and will be able to interview Matt after he lands.
The Robben Island Balloon Run is a bold attempt by Matt Silver-Vallance to fly from Robben Island to the mainland of Cape Town using only a cluster of 200 helium-filled party balloons. In doing so, he hopes to raise R10 million for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital.
The stunt is set to take place between 1 and 27 April 2013, depending on optimum wind and weather conditions.
The Balloon Run enjoys the support of a number of sponsors, including BMW, Afrox, , the Mount Nelson Hotel, Google SA, Rentshield, City Varsity and.
Visit www.balloonrun.com for more information. Follow Matt on Twitter @BalloonBloke or on Facebook.com/RobbenIslandBalloonRun .