Record-breaking bike jump
Australian motocross freestyler Robbie Maddison sets a new record with his Corinth Canal jump.
Motocross Freestyle, with breathtaking tricks such as flips performed at heights of well over 10m, is one the world’s most dangerous sports.
Red Bull freestyler Robbie Maddison has proven time and again that he ranks among the best in the business, but to really drive the point home he set out to complete the world’s tallest jump.
Not one for the quiet life, Maddison has completed a number of spectacular jumps that would have made pioneering stuntman Evel Knievel proud. In 2007 and 2008 he set three world records for distance with the longest one measuring in at a mighty 107m.
Picture by Jorg Mitter/Predrag Vuckovic/Red Bull Photofiles
Many Motocrossers have wanted to jump across the Corinth Canal, which was built in 1893, but the Australian was the first to succeed. The canal connects the Gulf of Corinth with the Saronic Gulf and is 6.3km long and 21m wide.
For this feat Maddison sped his Honda 500 up through a turn-filled approach past a pool, across a soccer pitch and past a chicken coop to a speed of 125km/h before ramping it over the canal about 80m below before landing safely on a mound set up on the other side of the canal.
At his highest point Maddison was 95m above the canal’s surface – safely clinching him the record for the world’s highest jump.
Maddison said getting the approach right with surfaces that changed from grass to concrete to wood to tar again and then carpet was tricky, but “overcoming fear, that’s always the hardest part”.
In 2009 Maddison celebrated New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas by jumping up 30 metres onto the Arc de Triomph in front of Paris Las Vegas and then descended off the monument to ground level. Last year pictures of him jumping the Tower Bridge over the Thames River with a backflip while the drawbridge was open also made headlines.
Pictures by Jorg Mitter/Predrag Vuckovic/Red Bull Photofiles