Stunt sets corkscrew jump record

Updated: September 14, 2012, 4:09 PM ET
By Jim Wilkie |

Jumping cars is nothing new for 27-year stunt veteran Brent Fletcher, but pulling off a ramp-to-ramp 92-foot corkscrew jump earlier this summer for Hot Wheels was different. And not just because it set a world record.

"Landing was the most exhilarating for me. Usually I expect a big crash or firebomb. It was a pretty great feeling, I'd like to do that every time," Fletcher said by phone Thursday.

Besides landing right-side-up, Fletcher, 47, said he enjoyed the feeling of weightlessness during the corkscrew, which had the specialized 2,600-pound buggy rotating 230 degrees per second, according to Hot Wheels.

[+] EnlargeBrent Fletcher
Lindsey Boice/Mattel, Inc.Brent Fletcher in mid-flight during his world-record, 92-foot corkscrew jump for Hot Wheels.

As with the Hot Wheels Double Loop Dare on June 30 at X Games Los Angeles, precise timing and speed were essential to landing a successful stunt. Fletcher's car was traveling at 54 mph before hitting the jump, according to Hot Wheels.

"It was such a fine line, that was the biggest concern," Fletcher said of the jump at the Hot Wheels Test Facility. "So many variables were working against us, a half-mile an hour makes a big difference of under- or over-rotating."

In fact, as seen in the above video, the left rear wheel lands just in time. A few feet farther might have had drastically different results.

"It responded really well. it was actually a really smooth landing," Fletcher said.

Other than custom suspension to aid landing and a center driver's seat for balance, the vehicle wasn't much different than a Class 12 off-road race car, Fletcher said.

The previous distance record for a corkscrew jump was 74 feet for the BBC show "Top Gear."