UNFORGIVEN TRESPASS

IN A THROWBACK TO THE COLD WAR, TWO BALLOON RACERS ARE DEEMED A SECURITY RISK AND BRUTALLY SHOT DOWN

THE GORDON BENNETT BALLOON RACE is one of the most prestigious contests of its kind and is based on a single rule: the balloon that travels the farthest wins. Following that canon has led many daring pilots over the years to risk their lives, and sometimes to lose them. Tragedy, when it occurs, usually boils down to collision with one of three things: bad weather, bad judgment or bad luck. In 1923 five balloonists were struck by lightning and killed in Europe. But during the 89-year history of this race, no balloon had ever fallen victim to deliberate human aggression.

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