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10 Of The Craziest Motorcycle Stunts Ever Performed

These Are The Best Motorcycle Stunts Ever Undertaken

Australian motocross legend Robbie Maddison rides up Park City Olympic Park's bobsled track on his way to breaking the world record for the largest vertical drop on a motorcycle.

Are you ready to take a look at some of the most incredible motorcycle stunts ever performed? We’ve catalogued the best  stunts ever caught on camera and put them here in one list for your viewing pleasure. We’ve got daring jumps, insane rides down bob sled tracks, incredible physics defying feats, and a couple of hard landings. While performing death defying acts on a motorcycle isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, it’s hard not to be impressed by some of the crazy stunts going on in these videos. People are crazy. People are awesome. And motorcycles are amazing, in any scenario.

To be honest, who hasn’t dreamed of performing one of these crazy motorcycle stunts at least once? Remember the first time you managed to lift that front wheel? Remember the moment that you managed to lift it again, but on purpose this time? It’s exhilarating, and it gets your adrenaline pumping, but very few of us have the skills, the courage, or the daring to do more than the occasional wheelie or an impromptu stoppie. There are some people out there who like to push the envelope and take their motorcycle stunts to the next level entirely. And these are the people we’re going to focus on here.

What Makes A Good Motorcycle Stunt?

What makes one stunt better than another? Or rather, what makes a stunt truly great? Well, it’s completely a matter of opinion but for the purposes of this list we’ve included what we consider to be the biggest and craziest stunts ever performed, and most of those are from world famous riders backed by huge sponsorship deals. But we’ve also included a few smaller and lesser known stunt enthusiasts who have managed to garner fame and acclaim for different, but no less spectacular, reasons. For the most part, the motorcycle stunts listed here generally put no one else but the stunt rider in danger – and as far as we’re concerned, that’s the difference between good and bad motorcycle stunts.

What Are Bad Motorcycle Stunts?

The kind of motorcycle stunts that aren’t making our list are the ones performed on public roads, where riders are breaking the law, and putting themselves and those around them in danger. Big groups of riders pulling inconsiderate wheelies all over the place aren’t exactly idol material – and while we’re all guilty of pulling the odd wheelie every now and again on a quiet road with no one around, whilst wearing full gear, we know that we’re not nearly as talented as the people that made the final cut on this list. We’re not anti-wheelie, we’re just against being a nuisance to other road users…that’s all!

So now you know our fairly loose criteria, let’s take a look at some of the most insane motorcycle stunts ever pulled in motorcycling history. Some of them are very well known, but hopefully there will be a few of them on this list that you’ve never seen before. And whatever you do kids, don’t try any of these at home…unless you’re a fully trained stunt motorcycle rider, a professional daredevil, or come with a sponsorship deal with Monster or Red Bull that gives you comprehensive medical cover for even thinking about trying some of these crazy motorcycle stunts…So without further ado, here are our favorites.

10 Ridiculously Awesome Motorcycle Stunts Caught On Camera

#10. The San Diego Bay Jump – by Robbie Maddison & Levi LeVallee

For our first entry, let’s turn the clock back to New Years Eve of 2011 going into 2012. Robbie Maddison and Levi LeVallee were billed to perform one hell of a death defying stunt: to jump the San Diego Bay, which spans a distance of over 370 feet (112.3 meters) in a tandem jump that would see Maddison on board his motorcycle, with LeVallee on a snow mobile. According to Maddison, the conditions were less than ideal, with the Australian motorcyclist unable to see the landing zone due to fog. When all was said and done though, the jump was made, and new records were set, with Maddison clearing a massive 378 ft, and LeVallee jumping a mad 412 ft. Don’t take our word for it though – watch the video below and see for yourself! We think this crazy jump is one of the best motorcycle stunts ever undertaken.

#09. The Ski Run by Robbie Maddison

There are a good few Robbie Maddison entries on this list, but that’s because he’s got a penchant for performing absolutely mental motorcycle stunts on a regular basis. There are a couple of particularly insane stunts going on in the video below but while we appreciate anyone brave enough to try their hand at riding down a bobsleigh track on their dirt bike, it’s the absolutely crazy ski jump stunt that we’re focusing on. To be honest, the thought of performing a ski jump wearing skis is frightening enough, but performing that kind of jump on a dirt bike is a thousand times more fear-inducing. In fact, just standing on the lip of that steep downhill would be enough to make us say “f*ck that for a laugh.” Luckily, Robbie Maddison is a little braver than the rest of us, and experienced no trouble as he accelerated to a speed of over 71 mph (115 km/h) and dropped over 180 feet (55 meters) at the same time. This is a great video that shows off some of the best motorcycle stunts ever undertaken.

#08. The Double Backflip by Travis Pastrana

Travis Pastrana is one of those rare two-wheeled (and four-wheeled) talents, one of those riders that can literally do anything with a motorcycle, and like Robbie Maddison, Travis Pastrana has taken on some serious challenges throughout his career. He’s done big jumps, crazy stunts, and more flips than you could count – accumulating plenty of broken bones and serious injuries in the process. However, there’s one trick that stands out, that’s arguably one of the most famous and most impressive motorcycle stunts of the 21st century so far, and that was his illustrious, groundbreaking, and death defying double backflip at the 2006 X Games. It was a world first, and luckily, it wasn’t the last, since Pastrana managed to make history and live to tell the tale. Take a look and sit in awe. To make things even cooler, Pastrana has repeated the trick plenty of times since that day, which just goes to show how great of a motorcyclist he really is.

#07. The “Pipe Dream” Water Stunt by Robbie Maddison

Robbie Maddison isn’t one to let a good idea go to waste, so when he came up with the idea of surfing a motorcycle, he didn’t waste any time prepping for his next stunt. Only an Australian could come up with the idea of surfing on a motorcycle…but that’s ‘Straya for you. And we’re glad he came up with this crazy idea, because what happened next was nothing short of magical. No doubt you’ve already seen the video a hundred times, but once more won’t hurt, will it? Using a modified dirt bike that runs on water skis and propels itself thanks to a rear tire with paddle sized knobbles on it, Maddison managed to smash three world records whilst playing around on his “water bike.” First, he achieved the longest ever motorcycle ride on water, accruing 19.8 miles, then he reached the fastest ever speed for a Water Bike, hitting a top speed of 58 mph, and finally, he managed to win the world record for the longest jump from land to water, thanks to a 61 ft jump. Crazy, huh? Aquatic motorcycle stunts, who would’ve thought? Take a look at the videos below!

#06. The Caesar’s Palace Fountains by Evel Knieval (And Robbie Knieval and Mike Metzger)

Ok, so this one was not one of Knieval’s more successful motorcycle stunts, but it was easily one of his most famous…primarily because it did not go to plan. Back in 1967, daredevil legend Evel Knieval attempted to jump what many considered to be an unjumpable distance, flying over 150 ft over the legendary Caesar’s Palace fountains. Unfortunately, he didn’t quite managed to make the landing and ended up breaking over 40 bones, and spent 30 days in a coma. Evel’s son Robbie has subsequently made this jump, along with stunt man Gary Wells, but if we had to pick our favorite successful recreations, it would have to be the 2006 effort by Mike Metzger, who amazingly managed to perform the feat and land safely, whilst performing an incredible backflip just to make things even more insane. Take a look at Kneival’s ill-fated 1967 run first, followed by Gary Wells unlucky attempts, and Robbie Knievals run, then compare it with Metzger’s ’06 attempt.

#05. The 19 Car Leap by Evel Knieval

OK, so crashing at Caesar’s Palace wasn’t exactly Evel Knieval’s finest moment, but while it was his most famous, it overshadows some even more exceptional motorcycle stunts that he actually landed successfully. While there are plenty of good jumps to choose from, we like Knieval’s incredible 1971 jump that took place at the Ontario Motor Speedway in Southern California: it was a jump that would go down in history as one of the most impressive motorcycle stunts of the 20th century. The plan was simple, to jump 19 cars that were arranged side by side, distancing a total of 129 feet. And he did it. In fact, Knieval’s record for the furthest distance jumped over cars on a Harley-Davidson stood for a total of 27 years. For the rest of Knieval’s career, he would only jump further than that one more time, when he managed to clear 14 buses, with a total jump distancing 133 feet. While 14 buses was technically further, we think 19 cars sounds more impressive, and that’s why we rate it as one of the best motorcycle stunts of all time.

#04. The Wall Of Death by Kerri Cameron

What? The Wall Of Death?! Really? Well, the Wall Of Death might have been literally done to death since the stunt first appeared back in the 1910s but a good rip around the humble silodrome always deserves a place on lists about motorcycle stunts – and this story in particular is one of our favorites. Kerri Cameron from the UK is apparently the only female Wall Of Death rider in the world, and if that wasn’t interesting enough, then you should hear how she got into her unusual line of work. Kerri’s place of employment, where she worked with horses, was forced to close down, so she headed down to her local job center for a bit of careers advice. After searching for “horse riding” in the job center’s online database, a rather unusual job appeared: “Wall Of Death Rider.” There’s a world of difference between riding a horse and riding a motorcycle at speed around a vertical cylinder, but Kerri managed to take to it instantly. Imagine going from “never ridden a motorcycle before” to “Wall Of Death rider” in the space of a few weeks? That’s why we like Kerri’s story and think the Wall Of Death is still one of the best motorcycle stunts ever. Watch Kerri’s story below – it’s amazing! Why do jobs like that never appear on my search results?

#03. The Highway Jump by Kyle Katsandris*

This one might be a little controversial, considering that it may have put innocent bystanders in danger…but it didn’t, so we’ll allow it. Also, the shear gall of the rider involved needs to be respected, regardless of how you feel about this stunt. Back in 2017, a motorcyclist took on a daring jump over a Californian highway (Highway 60) in Riverside County. The video caused a sensation on the internet because opinions were divided about the legality of what happened. The unnamed rider* was filmed building an awesome ramp leading up one of the steep banks that ran alongside the highway, and afterwards, footage emerged of the daredevil rider jumping the gap, filmed from several angles. The jump was awe-inspiring…but it left law-enforcement and many public commentators confused. Since the bike didn’t touch a highway, and since no one was hurt and could be classed as a victim, no one is sure if a felony took place. Either way, authorities wasted no time bulldozing the ramp in case copycats fancied having a go themselves. Take a look and tell us what you think? One of the best motorcycle stunts ever? Or a public menace?

*Kyle Katsandris was the original uploader of the video, and possibly starred in it. Who’s to say? 😉

#02. Base Jumping On A Motorcycle by Bradley O’Neal

Base jumping is pretty extreme, if jumping off of things is your thing. But what about if you throw a motorcycle into the mix? Well, anyone can ride off of a cliff with a parachute on their back, but that’s not good enough to make our list. If you want to fuse base jumping and motorcycling, we want to see a bit of actual riding, up an actual, natural slope first of all. And that’s what daredevil Bradley O’Neal has done here. Using nothing but the power of his Yamaha dirt bike, he manages to scale a fairly intense slope, before being thrown into the air. Luckily, he manages to deploy his parachute with just enough time to help slow his descent, before hitting the ground fairly hard. What we like about this one is the fact that it doesn’t require any man made ramps, tall buildings, hot air balloons or anything: just a man, a motorcycle, natural landscape, and a parachute. The only thing that would make it better is if the motorcycle survived the landing too…but that rarely happens with these crazy motorcycle stunts. Bikes are always the first casualty.

#01. The Motorcycle Flip, The Tightrope, And The Plane

The what, the what, and the what now? Yes, this is exactly as crazy as it sounds. What we have here is one of the craziest motorcycle stunts, actually one of the craziest stunts in general, ever to have happened. It involves a certain Jimmy Fitzpatrick of Metal Mulisha fame, an aerobatic pilot extraordinaire called Melissa Andrzejewski, and a tightrope high-liner by the name of Sketchy Andy Lewis. The stunt is simple: to fly a stunt plane underneath a tightrope, while a motorcycle backflips over the top of them both…all at the same time.

What makes this crazy motorcycle stunt so absurdly amazing is the fact that someone, somewhere, dreamed it up. “Yeah, you know what we need? An airplane, a tightrope, and flipping motorcyclist!” said one very enthusiastic energy drink executive. Probably. Now, if our description of what we consider to be one of the most incredible motorcycle stunts undertaken doesn’t make a lot of sense in text form, watch the video below for a real idea of what we’re talking about. Because it is truly insane!

Frequently Asked Questions

How to learn motorcycle stunts?

With determination, practice, and hard work. Professional stunt riders got where they are today by attempting stunts, crashing, dusting themselves off, and trying again. The only way to learn is to try, but before you do, take your safety into consideration by wearing proper safety gear, and practicing in a safe space, on private land.

How to become a motorcycle stunt rider?

The best way to get into professional stunt riding is to master as many riding skills as you can, whilst learning as many cool motorcycle tricks as possible. Learn how to perform wheelies and stoppies with confidence, and build new crazy stunts on top of those basic tricks. It’s a highly competitive industry though, and only the very best can make a living performing stunts.

What is the best stunt motorcycle?

The Honda CBR600 F4i and Kawasaki 636 are generally considered to be some of the best stunt motorcycles available. However, a great stunt motorcycle for a beginner is any motorcycle that you’re not worried about dropping or crashing.

How to build a stunt motorcycle?

Professional stunt riders have motorcycles tailored towards their personal preferences and skill sets. However, most stunt bikes have a few things in common: high-bars for better front end control and slow-speed maneuverability, and a modified tail section to make wheelies easier. The rest is up to your personal preference.

About Joe Appleton

Joe is a motorcycle industry veteran who has not only been paid for his words on the industry but also to throw a leg over a bike on the track. Besides riding, and occasionally crashing motorcycles, he also likes to build up older bikes in his garage in Germany. He says; "I like what I like but that certainly doesn’t make my opinion any more valid than yours…" We like Joe's educated opinion and hope you do too.