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John L. Smith On Recreating Evel Knievel's Jumps

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(AP Photo/John Locher)
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Travis Pastrana jumps the fountain at Caesars Palace on a motorcycle Sunday, July 8, 2018, in Las Vegas. Pastrana recreated three of Evel Knievel's iconic motorcycle jumps on Sunday, including the leap over the fountains of Caesars Palace that left Knievel with multiple fractures and a severe concussion.

Las Vegas once again became the playground of a stuntman Sunday, in front of throngs of tourists and a TV audience. 

In a three-hour live tribute to Evel Knievel, motocross champion Travis Pastrana completed the jump his predecessor attempted 51 years ago.

The jump nearly killed Knievel, but Pastrana lived out the dream when he successfully vaulted over 52 cars, and then 16 buses, and finally the fountains at Caesars Palace.

But Pastrana wasn’t the first to attempt that jump after Evel.  

John L. Smith , contributor

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Prior to taking on the role of Broadcast Operations Manager in January 2021, Rachel was the senior producer of KNPR's State of Nevada program for 6 years. She helped compile newscasts and provided coverage for and about the people of Southern Nevada, as well as major events such as the October 1 shooting on the Las Vegas strip, protests of racial injustice, elections and more. Rachel graduated with a bachelor's degree of journalism and mass communications from New Mexico State University.