Nail a world record-breaking jump
Robbie Maddison is one of the world’s biggest nutcases with a list of stunt records to his name, including a 392ft-long leap
“How do you jump 392 feet? You need to soupup your engine, stiffen the suspension and get the right ramp. Then you need to let go of the will to live and focus on the dream of flying!
“I probably don’t do the kind of research that many would consider to be enough when it comes to my jumps. I grew up on bikes and I have a sense for if I’m going at the right speed and what the ramp’s angle should be. Reaching 392ft is the result of a lot of trial, error and commitment.
“I hit the ramp at 115mph and that’s when you really need to start concentrating. There is an art to flying a bike and it rests around the clutch, throttle and rear brake. If you rev the engine the bike will raise its nose; brake and it drops its nose. While this sounds easy, get these inputs incorrect and it can all go horribly wrong. The biggest mistake is slowing the rear wheel down too much to alter the front end as you really only get one shot at adjusting it. On a perfect jump you should get over the midway point with the bike horizontal, having not made any adjustments. Then you have to land…
“Landing is a huge impact, so much so that I have had to have a lot of back surgery. I let the rear wheel hit the ground on full acceleration a second before the front lands. This allows the back to take off and moves some energy forwards, softening the hit.
“Another requirement of longdistance motorcycle jumping is having big balls! You need to take some of your brain out and pack it into your testicles!”