Felix Baumgartner drops in to MotoGP in Valencia

Red Bull Stratos skydiver Felix Baumgartner, who is a motorbike fan, is guest of honour in Cheste.
Pedross and Márquez talk to Red Bull Stratos skydiver Felix Baumgartner
Pedross and Márquez meet Felix Baumgartner © Simone Rosa
By Lucía Villegas

Last year, while the world watched with baited breath, Austrian BASE jumper Felix Baumgartner jumped from a capsule orbiting earth on the very edge of space for Red Bull Stratos. In the process he set the record for the highest manned balloon height, fastest speed of free fall and become the first human to break the sound barrier outside of a vehicle.

This weekend he’s guest of honour at the Red Bull Energy Station, meeting Marc Márquezwho stands on the edge of his own record breaking feat as he hopes to become the youngest MotoGP champion in the history of the sport.

Felix Baumgartner's first time back in Spain since Stratos

Red Bull: It’s the first time you’ve come to Spain since your record breaking jump from the edge of space with Red Bull Stratos last year. What’s it like to be back?
Felix Baumgartner: I hadn’t had the chance to come to Spain after the Red Bull Stratos project, so I’m really chuffed to have the opportunity to spend a weekend here in Cheste. The reception has been awesome and I'm really looking forward to an exciting day of racing. I can’t believe how good the weather is for November.

RB: You’re a motorcycle racing fan and this is a very important weekend for MotoGP. What do you think of the action you’ve seen so far?
FB: I’m astonished to see how these kids ride. It’s amazing to see them riding so brilliantly on the track but it’s only when they take their helmets off that you realise someone how young they are. Marc Marquez, for example, is only 20 years old. I’m 45 and I'm amazed to see how far someone can get at such an early age.

RB: It's interesting to hear that from someone who achieved an almost superhuman feat. So after Red Bull Stratos, how do you impress Felix Baumgartner?
FB: To be honest, I'm impressed by any athlete, like these MotoGP riders, who can reach and compete at the elite level of sport. What particularly impresses me here is the closeness and warmth of the Spanish fans. and also how the riders care about fans.

Marc Márquez and Dani Pedrosa discuss Red Bull Stratos with Felix Baumgartner.
Reach for the sky: Felix Baumgartner © Simone Rosa

Baumgartner talks training with Pedrosa and Márquez

RB: We saw you chatting with Marc Márquez and Dani Pedrosa in the Honda garages. What did you talk about?
FB: We were talking about the physical training needed to compete at this level. They cycle, run and do a lot of cardiovascular work. They train hard almost every day, which surprised me a little. We talked a little about this season and they asked me about Red Bull Stratos.

RB: Márquez is on pole today and set a new lap record for Valencia. Do you think he will become the youngest champion in the history of the premier class?
FB: I sure hope so. I can’t believe the great season Márquez has had. He’s about to become – if everything goes well – the youngest World Champion ever. In fact I bet he will be the winner.

Check out the Red Bull Stratos documentary on the official site.

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