A three-man crew of astronauts has taken a shortcut to the International Space Station.

The crew of one American and two Russian astronauts made history Friday when they arrived at the space station six hours after takeoff, instead of the usual two days.

NASA video of new crew after express space flight

The express route allowed NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy and Russians Alexander Misurkin and Pavel Vinogradov to get a quick start to their five-month mission.

Russia had successfully tested the expedited route three times with cargo ships, but never with a human crew.

Ahead of the launch, Vinogradov said the shorter flight path would reduce the crew's fatigue and allow them to be in top shape for the docking.