After setting a new skydiving record at Shyangboche, Nick Leventis flew back to Kathmandu. Explore Himalaya caught up with the British racing pro at the Radisson Hotel to find out more about his skydiving experience and his fund raising endeavors for charity.
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EH: How are you feeling after Everest Skydive? Nick Leventis: I feel good. I feel very good. We had a few tough days and the weather was not too favorable. But that’s the mountains and I am really happy I got the record this morning. I think a lot of hard work by Explore Himalaya went in to make this possible. I am really happy that we could get it done today and we could set a new altitude record in the Himalayas.
EH: Is this your first time in Nepal? NL: First time in Nepal, but its definitely not going to be my last. I think I am gonna come back next year for sure and try and do something even more outrageous and try and raise more money to give back to Nepal.
EH: In your first visit to Nepal you got to see Mount Everest up close. How did you feel? NL: Amazing, absolutely amazing. To be up so close, It was amazing to see the mountains, the views. It was just so incredible and for me, it’s a part of my heart now. I wanna come back next year and even the year after.
EH: What are your views about skydiving in Nepal? NL: I think it’s great, I think it’s very challenging! I think it’s definitely not for beginners but I think it’s a trip of a lifetime. I think skydiving in the Himalayas, especially around Mount Everest is fantastic. Not only just the skydiving but also the trek up to the Shyangboche area. You know there’s so much history and such amazing views and amazing culture, that you really feel a part of the country. The whole trip has been an amazing experience!
EH: As a racing professional, how do you find skydiving different from racing?
I have been racing my whole life and it’s my career. So for me it comes very easily. Skydiving is something new for me but I definitely think I am gonna be doing more of it.
EH: Are you planning to get involved in more charity works in Nepal?
Next year I have got a project with Ryan. But we are just gonna go home now and try and get as much TV coverage as we can. I would definitely like to come next year and do a documentary on myself and Ryan, basically a solo jump on the highest skydiving jump and landing at the highest altitude drop zone. Primarily this would be to raise money for Nepal and we would probably focus on the deforestation and also for the impoverished communities around Khumbu area as well.
EH: Would you recommend Nepal as a place worth visiting?
One hundred percent! Well if you haven’t been here already you should come here once, otherwise there’s no point in traveling anywhere else!
After three days of bad weather, the sky at Shyangboche finally cleared up today. Since early morning there was hectic activity at the drop zone as ESD crew and group members prepared for the jumps.
Between 8 to 9 AM (local time) the PC-6 aircraft took off.
Tandem- Christopher rainier & Tom Noonan
The first lift had Christopher Rainier from Canada making a tandem jump with Tom Noonan, while Wendy Smith and Ryan Jackson jumped solo from a height of 29,500 feet.
Nick Leventis & Tom Noonan- Freefalling from 30,000 feet
The second lift saw British racing pro Nick Leventismaking a record breaking tandem leap with tandem masterTom Noonan from a height of 30,000 feet: a new Everest Skydive & WORLD record.No skydiver had ever attempted a jump from this height at this altitude.
Wendy( with her camera), jumped solo and captured Nick & Tom’s free fall.
British racing driver Nick Leventis is on board ESD 2010, and today he made a tandem leap from 27,500 feet, above Mount Everest at Shyangboche dropzone around 13:00 hrs(local time).Accompanying him was tandem master Kevin Hardwick.
A well known personality in the racing circuit, Leventis’ Strakka Racing Team won the LMP2 class this year at the Le Mans 24 Hour Race. He is the ambassador of Global Angels and his jump was made in support of Global Angels Foundation, an international charity supporting Asia’s most disadvantaged children.
Freefalling – Nick, Kevin & Ryan
Solo jumps were made by Wendy Smith(New Zealand) and Ryan Jackson(UK) from the same height.
I am not the type of person that would usually take a trip from Beijing to Kathmandu by land. I had no idea what international travel was like or how difficult it can be gaining entry into Tibet. In fact I still don’t because Explore Himalaya made it easy for me.