French inventor Franky Zapata lands near St. Margaret's beach, Dover after crossing the Channel on a flying board Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019.

Steve Parsons/PA via AP

French air-board inventor flies across the English Channel

August 04, 2019 - 4:08 am

SANGATTE, France (AP) — The French inventor of an airborne hoverboard has successfully flown over the English Channel on a personal flying machine.

Looking like a superhero, 40-year-old Franky Zapata completed the 35-kilometer (22-mile) journey in 22 minutes Sunday morning, setting off from the French coastal town of Sangatte to land in Saint Margaret's Bay in Britain.

It was the energetic inventor's second attempt to cross the channel, after his first — 10 days ago — ended with him colliding with a refueling boat several minutes into his flight, destroying his transportation.

Zapata told reporters this time he was "scared to touch down" at the refueling station in the choppy sea, but knew his team "whatever happened, wouldn't let me fall into the water."

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