Evel Knievel is arguably the most important stuntman of all time. His daring jumps had never been seen before he attempted them. Knievel’s stunts might not have always been successful, but they certainly inspired everyone who got to witness the fearless attempts.
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Today, there are far more active stuntmen than there were during his time, with Travis Pastrana taking the forefront of the next generation of extreme sports stars. Pastrana, who runs a stunt show called Nitro Circus, has won championships and X Games gold medals in several events, including supercross, motocross, freestyle motocross, and rally racing.
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He recently paid tribute to the legend by not only completing, but also heightening, three of Knievel’s stunts in Las Vegas for an event called “Evel Live” on the History channel. Pastrana, who wore an Evel outfit, started with Knievel’s landed 50-stacked-car jump from the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in February of 1973. But Travis did it with 52 cars.
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Pastrana’s second recreation was one that Knievel didn’t complete: the jump over 13 buses at London's Wembley Stadium in 1975. Again, Travis upped the ante by using 16 Greyhounds accompanied by some awesome pyrotechnics. Finally, the infamous jump over the fountains at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, which Knievel failed to land on New Year's Eve in 1967.
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While Pastrana was able to complete all three jumps unharmed, Knievel wasn’t as lucky, suffering multiple injuries, as he did with many of his failed stunts, but he always recovered and continued on until he passed away at age 69 in 2007. Pastrana said of the jumps, "It's just such an honor to live in Evel's footsteps.” Check out the footage below...