Matthew Jones26 April 2011

Random video: 70s rocket-powered insanity

Kenny Powers tries one mile jump over the St Lawrence River in winged Lincoln Continental. Fails.

Having rediscovered the joys of the RSI-inducing Rocket Robin game on our own site last Friday, talk on TopGear.com turned to the most ambitiously rubbish car-based stunt ever pulled using rocket-propulsion.

Obviously our own attempt at Reliant-based space exploration featured highly. And then someone remembered this.

In the early 1970s, when such things were positively encouraged, American (not Canadian, apologies - Ed) daredevil/idiot Kenny Powers was nominated as driver for a cunning plan.

It involved him driving/flying a rocket-powered Lincoln Continental - with wings - off a massive ramp and over the mile-wide St. Lawrence River on the border between Canada and New York State. It cost an estimated $5.5 million in today’s money. And it didn’t go well…

 

There's actually a fascinating tale behind all this - check out the documentary The Devil At Your Heels for the full story.

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