Gliding through the air four thousand feet above the ground, this diamond pattern looks like a giant handkerchief knitted into the skyline. Consisting of 100 jumpers this world record canopy formation was achieved above Lake Wales, Florida last November. Measuring 200 ft by 200 ft the breathtaking configuration was achieved by skydivers locking their feet into the lines of parachutes below them and grabbing the canopies below them with their hands. Roughly the size of a 747 jet, the successful formation broke the previous record of an 85-way canopy formation set in 2005. A canopy formation, one of the most difficult manoeuvres for parachutists, is built by parachutists flying their parachutes in proximity to each other and then taking grips ("docking") on other jumpers' parachutes. The practice of building such formations is known by several names; canopy formations (CF), canopy formation skydiving (CFS) or canopy relative work( CRW or CReW). The 100 jumpers were able to join together on a second of two attempts, using their hands and feet to hook up to adjacent parachutes. The skydivers exited five planes flying at staggered altitudes to execute the formation. Brian Pangburn, a participant and one of the organisers of the record jump, explained the technical complexities behind the record. "The canopy formation is probably only done by about five per cent of skydivers in the world," explained the 43-year-old. "The planning for this was very precise.                     - Daily Mail "We had five planes, three Otters and two CASAs, which carried the jumpers. "The way you build it is that the gut on top starts and then he grabs the guy coming from underneath and so on. So we actually built it from the top going down. "The first plane, which was at 21,000 ft carried the first nine jumpers. They pulled their cords immediately after exiting the plane to get into position. "Exactly two minutes later we had another plane empty out the next 25 jumpers and two videographers from 18, 000 ft. "Two minutes after that at 15,000 ft we had another aircraft with another 25 jumpers. "And then at 12, 000 ft we had the last two planes carrying 20 and 21 jumpers. "It took us 11 minutes from the moment the first jumpers exited to when everyone hit the ground so we didn't have much time. "We also knew we had to break apart at no lower than 4,000 ft so that everyone to land safely on the ground. "It was close but we got the record just at the last moment."   Using specially designed advanced technology and aerodynamic PD Lightning CReW parachutes the jumpers were travelling at 1, 200 ft per minute. The success of the formation was built around solid communication. "Only three people out of the hundred could transmit messages - two in the air and one from the ground," explained Brian. "Each docking had to be exactly right so the communication had to be spot on. "The most dangerous portion was breaking the formation which is know as a 'starburst'. "When we broke it down we send off the bottom row and start counting backwards." For Brian one of the hardest tasks was to find enough participants to break the world record. "The canopy formation is probably only done by about five per cent of skydivers in the world," explained the 43-year-old. "It was very difficult for us to find the talent and we had to look around the world to get this record done. "Fifty-six per cent of the team were from America, the other 44 per cent were from countries all over the globe - Norway, Sweden, Belgium, Germany, Russia, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Egypt, Argentina and Canada."   Brian, who is also a member of the US Skydiving team and trains canopy formations all over the world, has been part of the organising team since 2000. "I got involved in the 100 way record because after the Germans broke the 53 record back in 1996 they proclaimed it to be a physical impossibility to build anything larger. "That sounded like a challenge to me so we decided to see how big we could go. "But we never dreamed of going to 100 until 2003 when we put up a 70 way and then in 2005 we got the world record 85 way. "It wasn't until then that we thought 100 might actually be doable. "Over the years we have gained a pretty good group of people from around the world who could get it done. "As we got more and more credibility we were able to attract better people from around the world."   However such was the skill levels involved, Brian and his team had to assemble the best skydivers in the business - from all over the world. "We started the training camp in February and we would invite people from around the world to what we called a try out/raining camp and we would evaluate their performance and we had a certain criteria they had to meet. "They had to dock with in a certain time period and they docked nice and smooth. Then we gave them a formal invitation to participate in the record. "From the time we started in February I was only home 21 days. We were going around the world evaluating people it took a lot of time to do that."   Brian found that not only the language, but also the different styles of techniques played a large factor in deciding the final team. "It is kind of difficult with the language barrier and with all the different cultures of skydiving. "Some people are used to doing things some ways and we ended up having to change a few mindsets to say we are going to go out and do things this way. Everybody had to thinking the same way. "Between the actual language communication and the techniques they were two of our biggest obstacles that we had to face. "Three of us went around to pick the talent and it was a difficult chore because there were a lot of talented people around the world and some were better than us but we had to have the same techniques in order to make this thing work. "The Russian were talented but some didn't make the team because they wouldn't adopt the same techniques."   Videographer Norman Kent documented the world record as he parachuted next to the formation. "In the case of the 100 record my job was much more complicated," said the 52-year-old. "The concept of the 100 canopy is a little bit crazy. You jump out of an aeroplane and arrive and open your parachute and then you're going to go and mess with it so that is off the wall. "I know a lot of skydivers look at them and say to these guys, are you nuts?" Despite the months of planning, Norman still had to work on instinct to get the best shot. "There's a lot of guess work involved in this type of photography," he explains. "This is a nerve wracking drama and you are in the middle of it."