WATCH: Canadian astronaut blasts off on Russian rocket

Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques blasted off from Kazakhstan this morning aboard a Russian Soyuz rocket bound for the International Space Station.

The 48-year-old doctor and astronaut lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome along with Anne McClain of NASA and Oleg Kononenko of the Russian space agency, Roscosmos.

The launch appeared to go smoothly from the steppes of Kazakhstan at 6:31 a.m. eastern time.

It was the first manned Russian rocket launch since a dramatic aborted Soyuz failure in October.

On Oct. 11, a rocket failure forced a Soyuz capsule carrying two astronauts to abort and make an emergency landing.