By Brad Wiley, Crain News Service
DETROIT (June 27, 2014) — The world of extreme sports is making up more and more daring records to break, putting shock and awe into thrill seekers.
This video is an up-close and personal view of French rally driver and professional skier Guerlain Chicherit soaring through the sky in an attempt to trump the previous world record for an automobile jump. He was trying to beat Tanner Foust’s leap, set back in 2011 at a lengthy 332 feet in a Hot Wheels truck.
Mr. Chicherit might have been greedy in asking for 28 feet more, but hey, go big or go home, right?
Maybe he should have gone home. The recently released video—shot from behind the scenes thanks to a GoPro Inc. camera—showcases the making of the entire event, from the beginning jumps and ramping up—pun intended—for the grand finale.
The vehicle—a Mini Countryman silhouette claiming 1,000 hp—made quick work of the ski slopes of Tignes resort in France as it made the approach.
But it all goes to hell fast.
The look in Mr. Chicherit’s eyes is terrifying enough. The bystanders are all frozen as the car plummets back to earth like a lead brick. The Countryman somersaults through the air, strewing parts across the landing pad before coming to rest on the driver’s-side door.
Amazingly—no, astoundingly—Mr. Chicherit is fine, aside from a few minor injuries.
It’s amazing what technology has allowed the spectator to see, and witnessing these moments of terror is seriously captivating.
Go ahead, take a look. It’s like, well, a car accident you can’t take your eyes off of.
This report appeared on the website of Autoweek magazine, a Detroit-based sister publication of Tire Business.