Thursday, August 27, 2015

I'd never heard of this stunt before


In 1979 stuntman Kenny Powers tried to jump across the St. Lawrence River between Canada and New York in a rocket-powered Lincoln Continental.  In a contemporary news article, he later described his attempt as "the wildest ride of my life".





Another stuntman, 'Mad Mike' Hughes, announced earlier this year that he planned to try the same jump in May, but I've heard nothing more about it.  Does anyone know whether it was attempted?

Peter

9 comments:

Rusty Gunner said...

The St. Lawrence Seaway Authority apparently declined to allow the stunt, which is not really all that surprising in our modern risk-averse era. As of May Hughes appeared to be working on some smaller stunt in Oregon for next month but his page has not been updated since then.

I think the Powers attempt might have succeeded if the car had a bit more pitch stability and the chutes hadn't deployed early.

Stephen J. said...

It's interesting to see that even back then the media were capable of talking out their hat about things: when the announcer intones dolorously, "He will be taking over 30 Gs of force," my eyebrows shot into my hairline and I thought, "Really? Because, you know, that would make him black out and make any kind of controlled landing almost impossible, if it was even physically possible for a supposedly rocket-powered car to go that fast, which it isn't."

(And I have to admit, as rocket-powered vehicles go that Lincoln seemed... a little weaksauce, to be honest. Am I the only one who thought something looked very weird and unnatural about the car's movement during its takeoff?)

lee n. field said...

"What could possibly go wrong?"

Anonymous said...

You had me at "Rocket-powered Lincoln Continental"!

Antibubba

Shell said...

I have a vague memory of the hoopla when he did it. Agree with Rusty Gunner's points on the engineering and his chances. He could've done it.

Anonymous said...

Two words: DISMAL FAILURE!

Gerry

Graybeard said...

"My daddy said, 'son,you're gonna drive me to drinkin' if you don't stop drivin' that rocket powered Lincoln'" Kinda ruins the meter, but couldn't resist.

Redneck said...

Kenny Powers? Really?

kamas716 said...

I should go watch Hooper again.