Action Athlete Flips His Way Into Film

Q & A

Pastrana Is Featured In 'X Games 3d,' Which Opens Today

August 21, 2009|By Mark Gross | Mark Gross,mark.gross@baltsun.com

Rumor has it Travis Pastrana did a backflip the day he was born - and stuck the landing.

That's the story, at least, according to travispastrana.com. Though the Annapolis-born motocross and rally car champ's Web site stretches the truth about his birth, the action sport athlete's extreme feats seem just as impossible. In 2006, Pastrana received widespread recognition for landing motocross' first backflip. Today, he continues to thrill spectators with dirt bike double-backflips and plunges into the Grand Canyon.

Pastrana is the featured rally car driver in "X Games 3D: The Movie," released nationwide today. In addition to Pastrana, the film features action sport athletes Bob Burnquist, Ricky Carmichael, Kyle Loza, Danny Way and Shaun White.

Question: : Have you seen "X Games 3D: The Movie" yet?

Answer: : They did an amazing job of creating a look into the athletes and how they get there, what is action sports and not only how to show it but how to feel it.

Question: : When you were watching the film, were you able to experience some of the same feelings you had while you were competing?

Answer: : With my section, you really feel like you're driving the car. This movie is a huge step for action sports. It relates to people not normally interested in this kind of stuff.

Question: : "Red Bull Toasted" on July 28 [and airing on ESPN in November] gave your friends an opportunity to roast you. What was the biggest surprise?

Answer: : At first I thought, "Oh, man, do they think I'm going to die if I do this trick this weekend? Or retire?"

Tony Hawk was there, and guys that pioneered what I'm able to do now got their hits in. Kid Rock said a few things.

Question: : Is there anyone you'd like to revenge roast?

Answer: : I'd like to get Verne Troyer. My girlfriend's 5 feet tall, and Verne came out as my girlfriend.

Question: : How is it you ended up BASE jumping from the Palms in Las Vegas with Kid Rock on New Year's Eve?

Answer: : We went to a piano bar. One of my friends, [Indy car driver] Marco Andretti, was sitting next to the guy playing piano. I looked over, and thought, "That's Kid Rock!' He was like, 'Hey, man!' "

Question: : How many times have you jumped into the Grand Canyon?

Answer: : Two separate times. The first time, I did it twice. The second, I did it three times. I went off on a street bike on one, and a dirt bike on the rest. You've got to clear a pretty good portion of the cliff, so a motorcycle's actually a lot safer. Last time, I got caught under the motorcycle and wasn't able to open the 'chute until it was too late. I tumbled into the ground really hard, got a lot of cactus everywhere, broke an ankle.

Question: : Do you have plans to give it another go?

Answer: : What I'd like to do is take a convertible off the Grand Canyon.

Question: : Any convertible in particular?

Answer: : I'd say a Caddy is the way to go.

Question: : What do you miss more when you're away from Maryland: crabs or snowballs?

Answer: : Probably the crab cakes. The thing I miss most is my grandma's lunch. My grandma, she's 89 years old, and she fixes lunch for the family construction company.

Question: : What's the rest of your summer look like?

Answer: : Getting knee surgery. Yesterday was the wrap party for the MTV show ["Nitro Circus"], so I'm looking forward to that coming out Aug. 27.

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