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Skydiver Luke Aikins sets death-defying record — here's why he'll do it again

Luke Aikins is a daredevil. He also is apparently a perfectionist.

The professional stuntman became the first skydiver to jump from a plane without a parachute — landing in a net after a 25,000-foot fall — but Aikins says he’d like to do it again...because he wants to stick the landing.

“I would. I want to hit the middle. I was off enough,” he said Tuesday on TODAY during his first live interview since the jump.

Aikins, 42, jumped out of a plane Saturday in California's Simi Valley, plunging through the air for roughly two minutes before landing safely into a 10,000 square-foot net that measured about a third the size of a football field.

Aikins said as he got closer to the ground, he began making out enough landmarks to see where he needed to direct himself. Once he saw the net, he flipped over and landed on his back toward the edge, off center by about 20 feet.

“I knew I was in, I just didn’t want to take that extra time to line up a little better,” he said.

Mark Davis / Getty Images
Skydiver Luke Aikins sticks the landing. Sort of.

Aikens, who has skydived since he was 16 and made 18,000 parachute jumps in his career, said he originally rejected the project when he was first approached about it.

“I turned it down actually. I thought it was a bad idea and I didn’t want anything to do with that,” he said. But he couldn’t stop thinking about the idea and figuring out how to make such a feat safer.

“It still gives me goosebumps,” he said of watching footage.

While Aikins said he wouldn't mind taking another stab at his feat, he can't imagine going one better.

AP
Luke Aikins, center, during his record-setting jump.

“I don’t think you try to top something like this. I think you just call this one a good one and move on to the next thing,” he said.

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