Rex Blackwell — United States
Rex Blackwell was born July 12, 1953 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He moved to Phoenix, Arizona and that's where his daredevil career began. In the early 1970's, Rex Blackwell and Gary Davis teamed up and called themselves the "Flying Cycles". They specialized in jumping cars simultaneously from different directions. They did over 300 jumps in excess of 100 feet. In 1972 in Scottsdale, Arizona, Rex and Gary jumped 117' over 15 cars.
Gary Davis and Rex Blackwell jumping as "The Flying Cycles".
After the team broke up Rex went on to do solo work. One of his solo stunts was jumping his motorcycle over two helicopters with the blades spinning. He cleared the helicopters, but just missed the last helicopter's blade upon landing. He also recreated the jump at Caesars Palace in the Houston Astrodome. He successfully made the jump. Rex did stunt work for television including the hit show, CHiPs. In 1977, he went to England to compete in a jump-off against Eddie Kidd.
Longleat jump-off against Eddie Kidd — Aug. 20, 1977
When Rex was 23 years old, he went to England to have a jump-off with Eddie Kidd. The contest took place at Longleat House at Warminster, Witshire. Rex Blackwell won the coin toss and made the first jump. What made the jumps difficult was it was raining.
The jump-off featured two of the world's top professional motorcycle jumpers. They were allowed two jumps each — the first over 18 cars and the second over 20 cars. There was an optional jump if a participant wished to improve one of his scores. Each successful jump would be scored on a scale of 5 to 10 points with 10 being the best possible score. The scoring of each jump was based on distance, form and accuracy.
The first jump was 95 feet over 18 cars.
Rex's first jump scored him an average of 8.5. Eddie Kidd's first jump average was a 5.0.
Rex's second jump scored him a 7.5 and Eddie's second jump averaged 9.0. The second jump was over 20 cars at a distance of 106 feet.
Both jumpers decided to do the optional jump. The score of this jump would replace the lowest score of their previous jump.
Eddie was able to bump up his score for a total of 18.5 points and that was enough to beat Rex.
Eddie then went on to jump 22 cars at at distance of 117 feet.
Special thanks to Lee Sobol for sharing these images!
"CHiPs" television stunt
Rex Blackwell was doing a stunt for the television show "Chips" in the 1980's but the landing wasn't perfect. His crash landing came as he was being chased by "CHiPs"; stars Larry Wilcox and Erik Estrada across Hollywood's famous Lot 2 set. The chase was ended by Rex clearing a 20 foot fence. But his front wheel missed the landing ramp and he crashed. Rex was able to walk away.
Actor Erik Estrada checking on Rex after the crash.