PARIS (Reuters) – Usain Bolt on Wednesday sprinted through thin air and sipped champagne floating on his back as he enjoyed near zero-gravity conditions in the back of an aircraft performing stomach-lurching parabola dives.
Retired sprinter Usain Bolt, French astronaut Jean-Francois Clervoy, CEO of Novespace and French Interior designer Octave de Gaulle who designed a bottle of “Mumm Grand Cordon Stellar” enjoy zero gravity conditions during a flight in a specially modified Airbus Zero-G plane above Reims, France, September 12, 2018. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
The eight-time Olympic champion grinned as he experienced weightlessness in a modified plane normally used for scientific research — but on this occasion to showcase a champagne bottle that will allow astronauts to drink bubbles in space.
The bottle was designed by champagne-maker Mumm. In time the company hopes to capitalize on the advent of space tourism.
Billionaires Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon Inc, Richard Branson and Tesla chief executive Elon Musk are locked in a race to send wealthy tourists into suborbital space, high enough to see the curvature of the planet.
They may want to toast their adventures.
Reporting by Reuters TV; writing by Richard Lough; Editing by Hugh Lawson