Billionaire business man, Jeff Bezos has expressed his excitement in the take off of his company’s Blue Origin maiden suborbital space flight together with his brother and two other people.
The American billionaire and the three other crew mates are due to in the next few hours take off from a desert in Texas in an expected 11-minute trip onboard space through the fully autonomous, 60-foot-tall (18.3 metres) Blue Origin New Shepard , that would represent an important milestone in the space market.
The Amazon founder in a round of televised interviews ahead of the trip, which is to begin few hours from now from the Blue Origin’s launch site, some 2o miles outside Van Horn, a rural suburb of Texas told “CBS This Morning” in a program:
“People keep asking if I’m nervous. I’m not really nervous, I’m excited. I’m curious. I want to know what we’re going to learn. We’ve been training. This vehicle is ready. This crew is ready. This team is amazing,” Bezos said. “We just feel really good about it.”
We had earlier reported that Jeff Bezos and his brother, Mark Bezos will be joined in the trip by 82-year old pioneer female aviator, Wally Funk, who will be the first and oldest female in space, together with18-year old Oliver Daemen, a University of Utrecht intending undergraduate.
The space flight has history to be made on its own. Apart from having the richest man and his brother on the trip, it would have the youngest and the oldest person on a space flight crew, a 82-year old and 18-year old respectively.
Oliver Daemen, the youngest crew member, who doubles as the first paying customer of the trip, had his father heading a heads investment management firm called Somerset Capital Partners.
82-year old Wally Funk was unlucky for similar exhibition in the early 1960’s when she signed up for a NASA Mercury-13 space flight but was denied the chance to be part of the crew on account of her gender alongside other women. Little did she know she would now come back to make history as the oldest space crew member.
“Back when Wally was part of the Mercury 13, all the testing that she did, she outperformed all of the men,” Bezos said on “Today.” “And we can confirm at 82 years old, she can still outperform all of the men. We’ve been doing the training with Wally. She can outrun all of us.”
In a similar vein, British Billionaire, Richard Branson had nine days back was aboard his Virgin Galactic’s rocket plane for his first suborbital flight from New Mexico.
This may be seen as a direct competition between the two billionaires but Jeff Bezos dismissed such rivalry when he said:
“There’s one person who was the first person in space. His name was Yuri Gagarin. And that happened a long time ago,” Bezos said on the NBC’s programme “Today,” referring to the Soviet cosmonaut who reached space in 1961.
“I think I’m going to be number 570 or something. That’s where we’re going to be in this list. So this isn’t a competition. This is about building a road to space so that future generations can do incredible things in space,” Bezos said.