Travis Pastrana successfully lands Evel Knievel stunts

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Just over 50 years after Evel Knievel’s ill-fated attempt to jump the fountains at Caesar’s Palace, Travis Pastrana successfully recreated the stunt on an Indian Scout FTR750.

The 11-time X Games gold medallist also recreated two of Knievel’s other famous stunts on Sunday, July 8, clearing 52 stacked, crushed cars and then 16 busses before the fountain jump in front of 25,000 people.

“I’m thrilled to have had this opportunity to honor Evel Knievel, whose guts and showmanship created the foundation for action sports,” Travis Pastrana said afterwards.

“Evel pushed himself and flew further on a motorcycle than anyone thought possible. So with this modern day tribute we wanted to bridge generations – from my parents generation who was inspired by Evel to the generation after me who may not know much about the original stunt men who paved the way."

Before the attempt, Travis said: “I don’t think I fully grasped how gnarly it would be to jump a 750cc motorcycle, I mean it’s like jumping a tank. I have just so much more respect now for Evel Knievel, if that’s even possible, than I had coming into this.”

The history of the stunt

Evel Knievel attempted to jump in 1967 but crashed on his landing ramp. He sustained multiple broken bones and was in a coma following the event.

Stuntman Gary Wells attempted the jump 13 years later, but missed his landing ramp altogether sustaining horrific injuries.

The jump has been completed successfully by Knievel’s son Robbie Knievel on a motocross bike, but the Scout FTR750 to be used by Pastrana is similar to the machinery used by Evel or Wells.

The other jumps performed at the event

Before jumping the fountains, Pastrana performed updated versions of two other Knievel stunts.

First, he jumped over 52 crushed cars covering a distance of 143 feet. Then he paid homage to Knievel's famous jump over 14 buses by jumping 192 feet over 16 modern Greyhound buses.

The attempt will be reshown on HISTORY UK on Monday, 9 July, at 9pm. Plus, if you're interested find your own Indian motorbike at MCN Bikes for Sale now.

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Ben Clarke

By Ben Clarke

Assistant Editor (Motorcycling), hick for life, two cylinders max