THE BACK-FLIP TRUCK
Another one of Rhys’s machines taking up shed space is this truck, but Rod can’t think of a better place to keep the vehicle from his son’s leastfavourite project to date. He went on to say that he hated the Red Bull stunt, and we understand why. Rhys’s first attempt, on New Year’s Eve 2007, left him with a broken back and fractured neck after he hit the ramp 6kph too fast, causing him to overshoot the cardboard landing on the 16th test run and not fully rotate, landing the truck on its roof. Although during his lengthy recovery he swore never to attempt it again, exactly one year later, the team returned to Las Vegas and completed the jump to bring in the new year.
Learning from the first approach, the team built a new truck. The original was a Championship Off Road Racing (CORR) Superlite machine running a V8, whereas the new one was a modified Superlite with a much lighter 2.4-litre four-cylinder positioned more centrally to reduce the pendulum effect a forward-positioned engine caused. The specialized ramp, with mechanical kicker at its peak that would kick up the front wheels, was also modified. Rhys’s team pioneered this ramp technology, and it has become the accepted way to flip vehicles, including monster trucks.