With jet-powered carbon fibre wings strapped to their backs, jetmen Yves Rossy and Vince Reffett soared over the skies of Dubai in what the daring duo have described as "the first-ever twin human formation" above the city's famous palm-shaped island on Tuesday (12 May).
It took five years of training and preparation before Reffett was cleared for his maiden flight as an official member of the Jetman team, fulfilling a long-time dream for the world renowned skydiver and holder of the world record for the highest base jump from Burj Khalifa in Dubai.
"It feels good to be in the air for me. It's kind of a dream," said Reffett minutes after landing safely at Sky Dive Dubai's landing field.
"I'm not a pilot, I never piloted an airplane before, but I can fly like a plane, more like a bird, next to you guys... so it's definitely beautiful," he added.
Yves Rossy, the original "Jetman" and the first person in history to fly using jet-engine-powered wings, announced his protégé and the newest member of the Jetman team on Monday at a press conference in Dubai.
The two men jumped out of a helicopter, powered their wings, and flew for 10 minutes over Dubai's skies, diving and performing acrobatic stunts, and holding superman poses during their flight, before pulling their parachutes and gently floating back down to the ground. During the flight, they reached speeds of up to 300kph (186mph).
"Speeds up to 300km per hour, actually we were 105 knots, our leader was Rob (pilot that flew the sea plane alongside the jetmen), so it's like an air force acrobatic team from the UAE or the Patrouille de France or the Red Arrows," said Yves Rossy.
But that, it seems, is not thrilling enough for the daring duo. Their plan is to "further explore what are the possibilities to the final goal," said Rossy.
"Actually we need an airplane to go in the air and we need a parachute to land. Our dream is to be Iron Man," he added.
Over the course of the last decade, some 15 different prototypes of the Jetman wing were tried and tested.
To date, Rossy, a Swiss national and a professional pilot, has conducted winged flights over the Swiss Alps, the English Channel and the Grand Canyon.
Reffett has no formal pilot training but is no stranger to dangerous stunts. He has completed over 15,000 skydiving jumps in his career so far. A French national, he also base jumped from the world's tallest building, Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and jumped 10,000m over Mont Blanc in France.