In the (drop) zone

Tweed Daily News - - FRONT PAGE -

IS IT a bird?

Is it a plane?

No – it’s the new Aus­tralian speed sky­div­ing record holder. Shane Turner, a paramedic from Tweed Heads, smashed the Aus­tralian record three times on his way to an in­cred­i­ble sec­ond plac­ing at the World Parachut­ing Cham­pi­onships in the speed sky­div­ing cat­e­gory at Run­away Bay. How fast was he go­ing, did you ask?

TWEED Heads sky­diver Shane Turner has bro­ken the Aus­tralian speed sky­div­ing record with three con­sec­u­tive blis­ter­ing jumps at the World Parachut­ing Cham­pi­onships in Run­away Bay.

Turner, the 35-year-old paramedic who is only a rel­a­tive new­comer to parachut­ing, took out sec­ond place at the world cham­pi­onships with a com­pe­ti­tion to­tal of (2474.99), fall­ing just short of Ger­many’s Friess Thomas Moritz (2495.40).

The for­mer Banora Point Pri­mary and Kingscliff High School stu­dent broke the Aus­tralian speed sky­div­ing record when he posted a speed of 510 km/h on Tues­day morn­ing. His next two jumps that day were even faster, with read­ings of 514 km/h and 524 km/h in­creas­ing his record speed and sky-rock­et­ing him to num­ber one on the leader-board.

Al­though Turner lead for most of the com­pe­ti­tion, Moritz fin­ished with two strong jumps to just nudge the Aussie.

The other­worldly speeds Turner notched are all the more re­mark­able when you con­sider his first and only speed sky­div­ing com­pe­ti­tion prior the event was at the Aus­tralian Na­tion­als in March, with a sixth-place fin­ish earn­ing him qual­i­fi­ca­tion to the world cham­pi­onships

The com­pe­ti­tion has seen Turner bounce from third, to 36th, to sec­ond to first place.

“It’s a bit of roller-coaster ride that’s for sure,” said Turner, speak­ing mid-com­pe­ti­tion.

“The ex­pe­ri­ence as a whole, just be­ing here and ab­sorb­ing the tal­ent and the raw en­ergy that’s sur­round­ing this place, is some­thing I’ll re­mem­ber for­ever.

“It’s cer­tainty some­thing I’ll con­tinue to strive for.

“It’s kind of un­be­liev­able, and it’s still a bit hard to un­der­stand.”

Turner’s fi­nal two jumps of com­pe­ti­tion are ex­pected to be com­pleted this af­ter­noon, weather pend­ing.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

Shane Turner cur­rently sits in first place in the speed sky­div­ing dis­ci­pline at the World Parachut­ing Cham­pi­onships in Run­away Bay.

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