Travis Pastrana Lands Evel Knievel’s Iconic Caesar’s Palace Fountain Jump
In what was billed as a tribute to Evel Knievel, daredevil Travis Pastrana attempted three of Knievel’s motorcycle jumps on Sunday in Las Vegas ― and in the process, he bested the famed stunt performer three times.
Travis Pastrana cleared the fountain at Caesar’s Palace, 52 crushed cars and 16 buses to successfully complete all three of his planned Evel Knievel tribute jumps for the History event “Evel Live.”
Riding an Indian Scout FTR 750 with a V Twin engine, Pastrana first cleared the 52 crushed cars and later 16 Greyhound buses in the Las Vegas heat — and he pulled each off with flair and room to spare. Oh yeah: Pastrana did it in Knievel’s iconic red, white and blue leather jumpsuit.
Knievel’s own car-jumping record was 50 automobiles. The legendary daredevil’s personal best bus sum was 14. Knievel crashed badly — and famously — at Caesar’s. There, Evel suffered a concussion, a crushed pelvis and femur, and fractures to his hip, wrist and both ankles. Knievel later blamed a speed error of about 5 m.p.h. for the 1967 failure.
Pastrana, 34, an 11-time X Games champion, wore a red, white and blue jumpsuit similar to what Knievel wore in his heyday and rode an Indian Scout FTR750 V-twin motorcycle that was described as being similar to Knievel’s Harley flat-track motorcycles.
In the first jump, Pastrana traveled 143 feet as he leaped over 52 crushed cars that were stacked three high. In 1973, Knievel traveled 120 feet when he jumped over 50 crushed cars at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
The second jump had Pastrana recreating a stunt Knievel performed at King’s Island in Ohio, when he jumped 14 Greyhound buses. Pastrana cleared 16 Greyhound buses Sunday.
Pastrana’s third jump was a recreation of Knievel’s attempt to clear the fountain at Caesars Palace. Knievel wiped out on the landing and was hospitalized with multiple broken bones, but Pastrana soared over the fountain and landed well down the landing ramp.
Read TheWrap.com’s preview interview with Pastrana here, where he laid out his entire plan to not die Sunday. It worked.