Sunday, Dec. 31, 1967 | 6 a.m.
Evel Knievel, the daring young man on the flying motorcycle, yesterday admitted he was getting "a little edgy" as the hour neared for his attempt to jump a 650cc Triumph bike over the Roman fountains at Caesars Palace.
The moment of truth for the 29-year-old Montanian is 2:30 p.m. today.
If he succeeds in arching 150 feet through the air to a safe landing on an eight-foot-wide ramp, his own record for this type of jump will be broken.
If he fails, it could mean a broken back ... or worse.
"I've got to admit I'm getting a little edgy," Knievel said yesterday as he finished tuneup runs on the large north parking lot at Caesars Palace. "I'm still confident I can make it, but my nervous system doesn't seem to agree. I'll be glad when it's over," he added.
Knievel has good reason to feel a bit apprehensive. He missed twice on obstacle jumps at slightly shorter distances. Failure resulted in multiple contusions and mangled arm the first time. His second miss returned him to the hospital with a fracture of the lower spine.
If he is successful today, repeat attempts are scheduled for Wednesday and Saturday, also at 2:30 p.m. The public is invited to witness all three attempts without charge.
"Sunday is the big test," Knievel said. "If I make it once, much of the pressure will be off for the second try."
The Caesars Palace jumps are designed as warmups for an attempted 1.1 mile leap over the Grand Canyon on a special jet-propelled Montesa motorcycle early next fall.