Red Bull Flugtag coming back to Portland August 1st - KPTV - FOX 12

Red Bull Flugtag coming back to Portland August 1st

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Team Yakima working on their 2015 Red Bull Flugtag entry. Team Yakima working on their 2015 Red Bull Flugtag entry.

As the Red Bull Flugtag returns to the Rose City for the first time since 2008, there’s one team competing with a little added pressure: the reigning champs.

45 teams from all over the country will gather at the Portland waterfront on August 1st, in hand-made contraptions they hope to see fly.

Beaverton-based Team Yakima (think car and roof racks) took home first place in 2008, flying off the waterfront stage for a distance of 62 feet over the Willamette River.

Now, they want to defend that title.

But the goal this year isn’t 62 feet, or even 63:

“The world record is 257 feet, so that’s kind of what we’re shooting for,” said team member Lyle Ramsdell.  “Portland’s got to be known for something, right?”

Each team picks a theme, and this year Team Yakima’s is the movie Animal House.  They’ve designed a bi-plane that will be covered with material representing the film’s infamous cake.

Teams are required to do a 30 second skit before they let ‘er fly, and are judged in three categories: craftsmanship, showmanship and distance.

While they’re not revealing their skit, Ramsdell said if you’ve seen the movie, you’ll appreciate it.

The whole process, from design to build, is a feat of engineering – and a labor of love.

“I think I’ve got 63 or 64 hours into it myself now and other guys on the team are right around the hours I have,” said team member Rod Nelson.  “[Ramsdell’s] probably got twice that many.”

But these reigning champs have something to prove:

“Prove that we can have a good time,” Ramsdell joked.  “I mean, that’s really what it’s about.”

And if they do get that world records, it’ll be, well, icing on the cake.

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