Almost since the beginning of our journey to connect people via Adrenaline, we have been aware of Team Blackstar. Sharing their photos on our Instagram account has become a regular occurrence and we’re big fans.
Not long ago we heard from Claude Evangelista, a skydiver who is part of Team Blackstar and just as keen as us to travel and share incredible experiences. After a quick chat it was obvious that Claude was our kind of guy, so we couldn’t be happier in welcoming him aboard the team as an ambassador for ADNA!
To get to know Claude a little better we asked him a few questions about his activities:
How old were you when you first did a skydive and how would you describe the experience?
I did my first Skydive last year, on my 21st birthday. My friend who works in Emirates invited me to come visit Dubai and spend my birthday there. I’ve done some research on fun things to do in Dubai and found out they have one of the best Skydive centers in the world because you get to jump on top of the man-made island “The Palm”. I wasn’t scared at all at first, but then as we entered the plane and climbed altitude, that’s where it all started kicking in, the first thing that came into my mind was “Oh god, this is actually happening, I’m about to jump out of a plane!” And as the doors open, I was so scared, once we jumped out I felt like I entered another world, It felt so surreal, I felt like I was flying, my smile was so big and it’s as if all my problems were gone, I didn’t think of the past, I didn’t worry about the future, I am just 100% in that moment, enjoying everything.
(Our parachute malfunctioned and we had to use our reserved one too! So that was fun! Haha)
All activities need a certain amount of equipment and training to get started. How difficult is it to get involved in skydiving in terms of cost and training opportunities?
Initially skydiving is an expensive sport especially in the beginning. You’d need to do your AFF (Accelerated FreeFall Course) and do 25 skydives and take a few tests and once everything has been checked, you earn your “A” Skydive License and can jump solo around the world. I spent around $2700 dollars on earning for my skydive license and spent $2000 dollars to buy my own parachute, helmet, altimeter and etc. Since I work as a cinematographer and director in a production house, I get paid by projects. So I basically spent all the money I worked for on 6 projects. It was costly, but well worth it. And once you have your own gear, it would be pretty cheap for a jump. You’d only need to pay $25 to $30 for a jump, you’re basically just paying for your slot on the plane.
When you’re not skydiving, how do you spend the rest of your time?
I love travelling and skydiving around the world, but I need money to do all that. So as long as I am here in my home country, I spend most of my time working and saving up as much as I can before my next adventure and travel. My brother owns a boxing gym as well, so I train there few times a week, and I also do some wakeboarding when I have free time to spare. Aside from that, I just keep shooting and saving money.
Can you imagine a scenario that would ever stop you from skydiving?
I would probably get freaked out if anything was to happen to my friends who skydive. Skydiving is safe but there are always things that can go wrong and if anything really bad was to happen to my friends and/or myself. I would probably step back, take it slow and take time to shake the trauma off. And spend that time to think what went wrong and what could’ve been avoided. But after few days, I know I’ll get back into it for sure. We can’t let fear stop us from achieving our dreams and being happy.
What has been your favorite location to skydive so far and where do you have on your list to do in the future?
My home dropzone is beautiful! Skydive Greater Cebu! It is located in a small island called “Bantayan Island” with beautiful white sand beaches, nicest people and great food. You can land on white soft beaches, and just jumping out with such an amazing view gives me so much happiness each and every jump. It never gets old. Plus it’s my home dropzone too! We are also planning on putting up another Skydiving center in the Philippines, over at Vigan City. It’s known as the 8th wonder of the world and has beautiful historical areas as well.
I plan to Skydive around the world, that’s the dream! Skydiving is a beautiful sport because you meet different people from all walks of life and it even gets better every time you visit different drop zones, but one thing sure in my list is to go back to Dubai and jump with the girl who did my first skydive, and I also really want to go to Greece and learn to do some base jumping too!
Do you try to skydive whenever you go travelling, or do you visit some places for the culture and some for the adventure?
As much as possible when I travel I want to incorporate some skydives as much as I can, usually I’d do some research on the closest drop zones in that area and do some jumps. If there is no skydiving in those areas, I usually search for all the fun activities there and do some sightseeing too.
Thanks Claude for getting in touch and sharing your experience getting involved in Skydiving. We’re looking forward to seeing and hearing more from you while you represent our community, we’ll be in touch about your Adrenaline Gear very shortly.
In the meantime, check out this awesome video made by Claude himself.