On a wingsuit and a prayer: The petite blonde with painted nails who started jumping out of air balloons at 18 and is now the world's fastest flying woman

  • Ellen Brennan, 26, first flew in a wingsuit aged 18 with her father after starting out as a BASE jumper
  • Has now won the title of the fastest flying woman in the world and does the sport full time
  • Says that she is never happier than when she is wingsuit jumping and has won titles around the world
  • Has moved from her home in the US to France to be closer to mountains so she can do sport every day

ByDaily Mail Reporter
Published: 20:19 GMT, 26 November 2013 | Updated: 13:18 GMT, 29 November 2013

Her blonde hair, petite frame and painted nails could be deceiving, but soaring at 112 miles per hour Ellen Brennan certainly lives up to her title as the fastest flying woman in the world.
After starting wingsuit flying just seven years ago, the 26-year-old American, has quickly established a name for herself in the flying world.
Growing up in New York, she quickly moved to the mountain town of Sallanches, France, to be closer to the hills that she now practices from every day.
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+12 Ellen Brennan, 26, the fastest flying woman in the world, wingsuit flying in Zhangjiajie, China

Gliding above the ground at over 3,500 metres, she effortlessly sails through the sky, giving the birds a run for their money.
She said: 'I started skydiving with my dad when I was 18, and then when I got bored of that I started BASE jumping from hot air balloons, bridges and small cliffs.
'However I quickly realised that I had the most fun when I was wingsuit jumping from big mountains.


Miss Brennan captures herself mid-flight as she wingsuit flies over mountains in Chamonix, France


Lift off: Miss Brennan launches herself into another epic wingsuit jump in Norway


The fastest flying woman in the world, during a flight in Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland


Miss Brennan showing her wingsuit flying skills in Zhangjiajie, China

'It was never a huge goal of mine, but as I became bored with the other sports I fell into the world of wingsuiting. I have been flying for seven years now and I can't imagine ever becoming tired in this sport.'

Ellen was originally given the title as the fastest flying women at the World BASE Race in Romsdalen, Norway, after she had won both the Kjerag U-Turn race and the WBR race in Romsdalen.
On board with the world's fastest flying woman

See more on Ellen Brennan's YouTube channel



Ready for take off: Miss Brennan and a flying partner get ready to do a double wingsuit flight in these images captured in Norway

After then winning the next race in Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland and by being the only girl invited to the WWL, she was able to live up to her name, and keep the title.

She said: 'I was elated when, standing up on the podium at the World Base Race, they announced: Ellen Brennan, the fastest flying woman in the world.

'I thought- 'wow, it's true, with all this hard work I've been putting into wingsuit racing I've made it to the top,' It's a bit surreal. Growing up I've never been particularly great at anything- I tried volleyball, baseball, soccer, but never really excelled.


Death defying: Miss Brennan adjusts her blue and pink flying suit before setting off on another daredevil flight



(Left) Miss Brennan and (right centre) receiving her title of the fastest flying woman in the world in Switzerland

'Then I found air sports and it changed my life, not only is it ridiculously fun, but I'm good at it.'

Ellen is now a full time jumper and jumps every day weather permitting.

With her highest take off over le Pleureur, Valais, Switzerland, measuring at an astonishing 3.715 metres, she is able to reach the max speed of 112 miles per hour.


Ellen Brennan, 26, the fastest flying woman in the world, mid-flight in Chamonix, France. She can get up to speeds of 112 miles per hour during a death defying wingsuit flight

She has flown over beauty spots all over the world, including mountainous regions in Norway, Switzerland, China and France.

Miss Brennan, who hopes to be the first to jump from peaks in Nepal as her next challenge, said: 'The reaction I get is usually shock, followed by 'really? you fly wingsuits?

'I think my appearance throws a lot of people off- a petite blonde, with her hair and nails done doesn't look like your 'typical wingsuit flyer. But as my parents taught me- do what makes you happy - and I have never been happier.'


Miss Brennan with her boyfriend Laurent Frat, 36 in Sallanches, France