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Top ten lunatic motorcycle stunt monkeys

Riders who seem to think bikes were designed to fly...

IT'S UNDERSTANDABLE to look at a new bike and ponder several questions. How fast is it? How much power? Is it comfy? What’s the tank range? What colours does it come in? But one thing that probably doesn’t cross your mind is: how could I jump that?

And that’s why you’re (probably) not a professional motorcycle daredevil.

When a designer sits down to lay down the blueprints for his company’s latest and greatest two-wheeler, he’s doing it in the assumption that it’s going have those wheels – or at least one of them – in contact with terra firma. Nobody goes out and tries to set world records of how fast or far they can drive an aeroplane along the ground, do they? So why the obsession with making motorcycles fly?

Jumping a bike is like taking a finely-crafted fountain pen and shoving it up your nose as hard as you possibly can. It’s a pointless, dangerous exercise, but one that will make people turn and look at you for a minute. Wear a spangled one-piece for maximum impact.

But you probably won’t go down in history for doing it. Unlike these, our top-10 motorcycle daredevils.

 

10: Ronnie Renner

One of the generation of bike jumpers to have emerged from the explosion in the freestyle motocross scene in the last couple of decades, Renner’s forte is height rather than distance. Above you’ll see his 2009 world record 63’5” quarterpipe jump.

 

9: Alex Harvill

While there seems to be less focus on distance jumping these days than in the past, there are still riders trying to outdo each other. Harvill managed a 425ft ramp-to-dirt jump in 2012 and a 297.5ft dirt-to-dirt world record in 2013. An attempt at a world-record 246ft leap last year was cancelled after an injury gained in the run-up to the event.

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