I hate to think how much time, effort and money went into setting up this stunt, but needs must… and people always want to prove themselves.
And so, Taig Khris, the champion of French extreme in-line skating, becomes the first man to skate down the Eiffel Tower. Thanks to MatthewTeeVee for the video:
The Eiffel Tower is 324m tall to the very top of the antennas – about the same height as an 81-story building, but 276 to the last platform. Universally recognised, it was initially constructed in 1889 for the Universal Exhibition in celebration of the French Revolution and not intended as a longterm structure. It was supposed to be dismantled after 20 years. It is made up of 18,038 pieces of puddled iron with 2,500,000 rivets. Its total weight is 10,100 tons.
Hugely unpopular at the time of its conception it attracted angry comments from illustrious Parisiennes: “And during twenty years we shall see, stretching over the entire city, still thrilling with the genius of so many centuries, we shall see stretching out like a black blot the odious shadow of the odious column built up of riveted iron plates.” The author Guy Maupassant, who said he hated the tower, ate in its restaurant every day because he said it was the one place in Paris where one could not see the structure!
But now, as we all know, it is the national icon of both Paris and France…
So how grand a jump exactly was this?
Khris regarded the Tower as a challenge, not necessarily the ultimate one, for an extreme sports in-line skating champion. He jumped from the first platform of the tower (57m) dropping 10m (41 ft) before landing on a quarter pipe ramp ending in foam to break his fall and slow down the slide on the landing.
He set a new Guinness world record by jumping off the Eiffel Tower with roller skates on. He had to make a second attempt to attain the record although some say that it should not be treated as a record as technically he did not complete the stunt on his feet.
However, it was a daring feat and must be recognised as such. After completing the jumps, he said “Two years non-stop, I didn’t sleep for nights and nights for that small moment up there and now, as you can see, I made it so that’s cool.”
Khris has also beaten the previous record of 8.53 m by American Danny Way. After his breathtaking jump he said that he has never felt such a strong adrenaline rush and added that he jumped to give people the desire to push their limits, to follow their passions, and their dreams.
He is now planning his next challenge…