Professor Splash takes the plunge – into pool of milk
THOUSANDS of people packed around the main ring on Friday to watch an American stunt diver make a big splash as he set a spectacular, and highly dangerous, world record.
Darren Taylor, 51, known as Professor Splash, dived – or belly-flopped to be accurate – from a 30ft-high platform into just 12in of milk provided in a paddling pool by Lostwithiel's Trewithen Dairies.
Professor Splash psyched himself up for the dive, milking the magic moment with a build-up not far short of half an hour.
"Don't try this at home," the crowd was warned repeatedly.
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A finalist on America's Got Talent last year, Professor Splash went through the motions of testing the milk and pronouncing it up to standard, but his real concern were the strong winds gusting across the main ring as he stood high up, stripped to his leotard and preparing to dive.
"Don't do this at home, or at a friend's house, it needs professional training," he announced to the crowd, while Bill Clarke, managing director of Trewithen Dairies who had booked him for his only appearance in Britain and was standing shivering by the plastic pool, said: "I'm petrified."
It took a long time to prepare, but it was over in a second as Professor Splash launched himself into the air and hit the milk – belly first.
The white liquid splashed into the air and over those standing nearby, but the stout-hearted stuntman was soon up on his feet to greet the applause of the huge crowd.
Mr Clarke said: "I've never seen anything like it, the guy's a legend," while the Professor told me: "If you let fear get the better of you, this stunt would kill you. It was the windiest dive I have ever done in my life and I hope to ratify it as a world record."