The latest stunt from drinks manufacturer Red Bull has seen a man walking on water.
Kite surfer Maciek Kozierski teamed up with six-time Israeli wakeboard champion Lior Eliyahu for the project, modestly codenamed Miracle after Jesus’s New Testament feat.
The 26-year-old athlete from Warsaw spent four full days on the water near the church at Capernaum on the Sea of Gallilee, where Jesus is said to have done the same thing.
The plan was that Kozierski would use his kite to accelerate to maximum speed, then step off the board, release the kite and use his built-up momentum to walk on water.
But while Jesus apparently managed the feat without too much huffing and puffing, Kozierski had a little more difficulty. When the wind was strong enough for the kite, the waves were too high – and when the surface was calm, there wasn’t enough wind.
Kozierski crashed hard into the water at high speed more than 50 times.
On the fourth day, though, he finally managed it. “We did it without any tricks or smoke and mirrors,” he says.
Kozierski joins an elite group. As well as Jesus, Gautama Buddha is said to have walked on water to cross a river some 500 years earlier, and the feat pops up in several Native American myths. Sandbanks below the surface are the usual explanation.
Leonardo da Vinci even invented something like snowshoes, designed for the same thing, and in 2006 a patent was awarded to Massachussetts inventor Yoav Rosen for a similar pair.