Richard Branson: Exuberant joy after the first space flight

Richard Branson
Exuberant joy after the first space flight

Richard Branson and his crew cheer after the successful flight into space.

© imago / ZUMA Wire

Richard Branson leads the space race with Jeff Bezos. After his first space flight he was euphoric: “The whole thing was magical!”

The British billionaire Richard Branson (70) really did it: yesterday, Sunday, the adventure flew into space with his own private space company Virgin Galactic. The space glider VSS Unity took off on a carrier aircraft around 10:40 a.m. local time from Spaceport America in the US state of New Mexico and left the atmosphere a few minutes later. Almost exactly an hour later, all passengers landed safely on the ground again.

After landing, Branson received the coveted astronaut badge and cheered into the cameras, visibly relieved: “What a day, what a day. The whole thing was just magical.” While in zero gravity, Branson even recorded a video which he shared a little later via Twitter. The entrepreneur straight from space: “I was once a child with a dream that looked at the stars. Now I’m an adult in a spaceship.”

The aim of the company is to stimulate space tourism. In addition to Branson, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos (57) is also pursuing similar plans, but has now suffered a first defeat in the space race with competitor Branson. His space company Blue Origin will not allow Bezos his first foray into space until July 20th. Anyone interested can buy tickets for space excursions at Virgin Galactic. Cost: a mere 250,000 euros.