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Two Eagles Balloon Team, Associated Press
In this Jan. 26, 2015 photo provided by the Two Eagles Balloon Team, the helium-filled ballloon carrying Troy Bradley of Albuquerque and Leonid Tiukhtyaev of Russia passes over Mt. Fuji after taking off from Saga, Japan. The two pilots landed safely off the coast of Mexico early Saturday, Jan. 31, 2015 after an audacious, nearly 7,000-mile-long trip across the Pacific Ocean that shattered two long-standing records for ballooning. The pilots landed 4 miles offshore in Baja California about 300 miles north of the popular beach destination of Cabo San Lucas.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The two pilots who completed a record-breaking flight across the Pacific Ocean in a helium-filled balloon have returned to New Mexico.

A large crowd greeted Troy Bradley of Albuquerque and Leonid Tiukhtyaev of Russia at the airport after they finished the historic journey a day earlier. The news conference was adorned with colorful balloon decorations to mark the occasion, and the event included a champagne toast.

Bradley had been planning the trans-Pacific flight for 15 years, and his wife said he was driven by a goal of doing something better than anyone else in the world.