Record bid is underway in America's Challenge Gas Balloon Race.
Five teams of gas balloonist representing Team GB have launched from the America's Challenge Gas Balloon Race 2012 in Albuquerque.
The Gas Balloon Race, with the pilots using their skills to see who can fly the furthest from the take off point, started at 1.00am on Monday morning, with one balloon being launched at a time.
After a long day of preparation, Clive Bailey from Bristol and Jon Mason were the fourth balloon to take to the skies in their balloon, called Lady Britannia at 1.30am.
They lifted off with the balloon lit up by a spotlight and to the sound of the British national anthem with cheering onlookers as they flew off into the darkness.
Clive Bailey said: "I was physically shaking with emotion and nerves as we were moved to the launch podium and the National anthem started playing, thousands of people cheering and all I could think of was the 10,000 foot mountains a few miles ahead and had we calculated the ballast correctly to clear them."
As Albuquerque disappeared into the darkness, the silence seems erie, with distant lights far below us and our magic carpet whisking us swiftly through the skies. The night time temperature has really dipped to -11"
They had a smooth launch followed initially by a close (but not too close) encounter with a mountain. By 6.30 am the British team had travelled over 115 kilometres going East of Albuquqerque."
This year the tables have turned for Team GB with David Hempleman-Adams, as Flight Controller, for the first time, along with Simon Carey who are based at the Flight Control Centre near Bath.
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