The accident happened during the Celtic Cup Hang Gliding Competition which was held over 24 and 25 May 2003 at Mount Leinster on the Carlow / Wexford border. A task was set to fly from the summit of Mount Leinster to a field on the east coast just south of Courtown Harbour – a distance of 37.2km. The pilot arrived over the field and after descending towards the goal area, attempted to perform a loop in his hang glider. The glider failed to complete the loop and slid backwards into a series of reverse loops during which the pilot became detached from the control bar and lost control. He made several attempts to deploy his reserve parachute. When it did deploy, insufficient height remained to recover the situation and the pilot and his hang glider hit the ground simultaneously. The pilot was injured and taken to hospital. He died from his injuries 9 days later.