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Frenchman nails perfect backflip ... in a Mini

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February 20, 2013

Guerlain Chicherit has nailed a perfect landing after a backflip in a Mini

Guerlain Chicherit has nailed a perfect landing after a backflip in a Mini

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Despite what you may have seen in movies and TV shows, cars aren’t generally much good for aerial acrobatic work. That hasn’t stopped professional skier and rally driver Guerlain Chicherit combining his two areas of expertize to become the first person in the world to perform an unassisted backflip in a car and execute a perfect landing on a bed of fresh powder snow.

The impressive feat was performed last weekend at Tignes, a winter sports resort in Chicherit’s home country of France that hosted the freestyle skiing competition at the 1992 Winter Olympics. The jump was made by 34-year-old Chicherit in a modified Mini Countryman and was executed unassisted – meaning that the static ramp had no moving elements to boost the car’s rotational movement. Mini says the ramp actually fits the same template as a quarterpipe on a freestyle snowboarding course.

Video of the jump can be viewed below, which we’ve followed with a previous teaser from Mini that presumably didn’t finish as well.

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag.   All articles by Darren Quick
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6 Comments

As so many have commented on you tube, this don't look to be real mini but some thing with a mini´s body. And why haven't they balanced the car out? Both videos you see it flipping with a twist to one side.

Toffe Kaal
21st February, 2013 @ 12:36 am PST

"And why haven't they balanced the car out? Both videos you see it flipping with a twist to one side. " - Toffe Kaal

That's just the fly wheel and drive shaft. You can hear the motor revving which indicates that power is being applied to the drive train throughout the flip. The car will tend to twist in the opposite direction.

Interestingly, the reason that the driver applied that power is probably for a similar reason. Power being applied to the wheels would have assisted the flip. Or at least if power wasn't applied, the friction in the wheel hubs slowing the rate of the wheels' spin would have caused the car to slow down in its rate of backwards rotation.

GrantH
21st February, 2013 @ 01:39 am PST

I don't understand why the film was cut so many times, and why there was such a loud "pop" sound as he took off of the ramp. Does the ramp have a device that assists the flip? Does the front suspension have a device that assists the flip? This did not seem like an un-aided back-flip.

I really with they had just included a non-cut side-view of the entire jump.

Milton
21st February, 2013 @ 10:43 am PST

monster trucks have already done this ??? but i guess a truck is not a car

Leonard Foster Jr
21st February, 2013 @ 07:39 pm PST

More like a "Mini Monster Truck", but still cool.

sunfly
22nd February, 2013 @ 04:35 pm PST

Just a body on a purpose-built frame (note the rear diff and strange front suspension on the container video). It's much like Chevy or Ford or Dodge claiming victory at Daytona, it's just a shell.

Bruce H. Anderson
22nd February, 2013 @ 08:22 pm PST
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