Michael Strahan may soon be the only person in history to sack Tom Brady and visit space.
The NFL Hall of Famer and “Good Morning America” co-host announced Tuesday that he will blast off at the edge of space aboard Blue Origin’s third manned spacecraft on December 9.
Blue Origin, an aerospace company owned by Amazon AMZN,
Founder Jeff Bezos will launch a crew of six on his 10-minute flight from West Texas next month, including Laura Shepard Churchley, the eldest daughter of astronaut Alan Shepard – the first American to go to space. In fact, Blue Origin’s reusable suborbital rocket, New Shepard, was named after her father.
While Strahan and Shepard Churchley are Blue Origin’s “honorary guests” on this flight, meaning they’ll get a free ride, the remaining four crew members paid for the flight. They include: venture capitalist Lane Bess and his son Cameron, who would become the first parent-child couple to go into space; investor and engineer Evan Dick; and Voyager Space CEO Dylan Taylor, the company announced,
Blue Origin hasn’t disclosed how much tickets cost, but to get a ballpark figure, rival Virgin Galactic SPCE,
is charging $450,000 for a spot on its SpaceShipTwo. A report estimates the global suborbital transportation and space tourism market Will reach $2.58 billion in 2031,
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It’s the latest step in the billionaire space race that has seen private space exploration explode this year, beginning with Virgin Galactic CEO Richard Branson launching the first private passenger flight into space on July 11. After this Bezos joined Blue Origin’s first manned space flight. A few days later, which Strahan covered for ABC.
Founder Elon Musk’s SpaceX made its first private space flight in September, although Musk was not on board. SpaceX’s Inspiration 4 flight took longer than Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin jaunts, and the journey was three days long, compared with 10 minutes or so.
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“I wanted to go to space,” Strahan said on “Good Morning America” Tuesday morning, discussing his upcoming trip. “I think being there on the first launch, it was really mind blowing.”
So when Bezos asked her to come along for the ride, Strahan said she said yes “without hesitation.”
Indeed, when “Star Trek” star William Shatner flew to space on Blue Origin’s second manned flight in October, an emotional Shatner said, “Everyone in the world needs to do this… was,” after touching down back to earth.
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Strahan shared footage of him fitting into his flight suit, and testing the seat his six-foot-five frame would be strapped on when lifted in just 16 days.
“I believe this innovative, creative, pioneer in aviation, is now the way of space travel,” Strahan said. “And it’s going to take some time, but I believe it will bring a lot of technological breakthroughs and innovations for us here on Earth, and I just want to be a part of that.”