Robbie Maddison Goes Big-Again! - New Year, No Limits

Up To Speed

While most Americans spent December 31st tying one on and watching the ball drop, Australian stuntman Robbie Maddison strapped on a huge set and launched his motorcycle nearly 100 feet straight up into the nighttime sky.

Over the last year, the 27-year-old has earned the nickname Mr. New Years Eve. To ring in 2008, he accelerated a Honda CR500 to 95 mph and jumped 322 feet over a faux football field laid out in the parking lot of the Rio Hotel & Suites in Las Vegas, Nevada. His most recent stunt was even more spectacular.

Red Bull's New Year No Limits kicked off with car racer Rhys Millen attempting a backflip in a desert-racing Trophy Truck-a stunt which he was nearly paralyzed practicing one year ago. Then, shortly after the clock struck midnight Eastern Time, Maddo accelerated his Yamaha YZ250 to 55 mph, hit a near-vertical take-off ramp and flew 96 feet straight up onto the top of the replica Arc de Triomphe at Paris Las Vegas.

That was the easy part. He then jumped back down, landing on a second ramp erected parallel to the first.

Maddo practiced both stunts on a replica of the replica at the Red Bull compound, and made no bones about the freefall down being more dangerous. He'd already had one close call while practicing, and on the big night went slightly too fast, missed the sweet spot on the landing ramp and slammed down so hard he split the palm of his hand.

Viewing the show live on ESPN, it was hard not to get caught up in the drama. Maddo's fiancee Amy visibly trembled as she watched, and Maddo himself uttered the F-word as medics attended to his injured hand while he was being interviewed by Jamie Little. It was an amazing feat, and begs the question: What next?

Maddo says he's got a few ideas already...

First the leap up...and then back down. Say what you will about Robbie Maddison, just don't say he hasnt got balls!