Paralyzed Racer Tanner Godfrey Shatters World Record for UTV Vehicles at Eureka Resort

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Tanner Godfrey, paralyzed from the sternum down in a 2007 motocross race in Mesquite, Nevada, jumped a UTV 105 feet to break the world record. Godfrey, through intense determination and rehabilitation, walks short distances with canes and hasn’t lost his spirit to go fast and far.

Tanner Godfrey, Niitro Circus,Mesquite Nevada

Tanner Godfrey flies 105 feet at the Eureka Casino Resort in Mesquite

“I’m not done yet,” said Tanner Godfrey. “This is just the beginning for me on the track and in life. I have a lot left to do.”

Tanner Godfrey, in front of about two thousand excited fans, flew off a jump in front of the Eureka Casino Resort as part of the festivities for Mesquite Off-Road Weekend, and landed 105 feet from where he left soil. The attempt set a new Guinness World Record for the longest UTV (Utility Terrain Vehicle) jump ever officially documented. The previous record was 47 feet held by Junior Quisquis which was set in 2009 in California. Tanner more than doubled the record. Godfrey took two runs at the jump—his first attempt measured 102 feet—and has now etched his name in the history books on a perfect night in Mesquite, which is located 77 miles north of Las Vegas. Mesquite Off-Road Weekend continues through Saturday with trail rides, the PowerSports Fan Expo, the Nitro EnduroCross, and the Nitro Circus: Beyond Pro event. Visit for all details and tickets. Note: the jump still needs to be certified by the Guinness Book of World Records organization but all guidelines were followed for certification.

“What was I thinking heading down the hill? ‘I hope I’m going fast enough’ …,” said Godfrey, moments following the big jump. “But my co-pilot, Aaron “Wheels” Fotheringham, told me I was good and we hit it. Everything went great. It was an epic moment on an epic weekend. And I just thank all of the fans, everyone at the Eureka, and my family for helping to make this happen.”
Andre Carrier, COO of the Eureka Casino Resort and the driving force behind Mesquite Off-Road Weekend, was front and center for the attempt. Earlier, Nitro Circus Co-Founder and Tanner’s Uncle, Gregg Godfrey, took Carrier in a UTV over a smaller jump next to the big ramp. And prior to Tanner’s jump, Carrier confirmed that for every foot he flew, the Eureka Casino Resort would donate $25 to the Wounded Warrior Project. The initial total will be $2,625 but other public donations should push the final total to more than $5,000.

“This video and this moment will play a lot, and I hope the right people see it and are motivated by it,” said Carrier, while wearing a Wounded Warrior hat and jacket. “I hope a soldier in Walter Reed Hospital right now who is struggling with a spinal injury sees this video and is inspired by Tanner’s spirit and gumption to not let circumstances get in the way of living. Watching his determination and this moment should remind us all to never give up. This night brought a whole lot of people together to have a whole lot of fun and do a whole lot of good.”

Some of the first words out of Tanner Godfrey’s mouth following a motocross crash on Mesquite in 2007 were: “What your mind can conceive, it can achieve.” The quote, which he remembers reading shortly before the crash, was in response to doctors who told him that he would never walk again due to the severe injuries he sustained to his spine. But since that time, Godfrey has taken steps without the aid of a cane and he created a control system that allows him to operate off-road vehicles including the Wildcat 1000 UTV (Utility Terrain Vehicle) from Arctic Cat and sponsored by Edge Powersports. Much like the obstacles in his everyday life, Tanner conquered the jump.

“I’m not done yet,” said Godfrey. “This is just the beginning for me on the track and in life. I have a lot left to do.”

About Tanner Godfrey and quotes about injury
“I never had any doubts that I would walk again,” says Godfrey, whose father crashed in the exact same spot on the Mesquite track 24 hours prior to his 2007 wreck. “I didn’t listen to any of the doctors and had faith in myself to overcome this. I am not all the way back but the journey continues, and I make progress every day. I graduated from high school in 2007 and felt like I was untouchable, but if something like this is going to happen, it’s going to happen. I am still very active and have adapted and learned to do things without the full use of my legs.”

“Tanner is a real inspiration,” said Andre Carrier President of the Eureka Casino Resort, host of the jump and the weekend festivities. “The more I learned about him and his story, the more I was reminded of the service men and women we work with at the Wounded Warrior Project and how psyched they would be to learn about what Tanner is doing. The wars of the last ten years have left thousands of warriors with multiple injuries, including spinal cord injuries and loss of mobility.”
Godfrey is a free spirit who still maintains supreme confidence—and a sense of humor—about his situation and the impending jump attempt. “If you make it, you land good; and if you don’t, you crash good,” says Godfrey with a chuckle. “It could go really well or it could go really poorly; but it will go very well, now having the jump raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project makes it all the better.” The idea for this jump came about when the guys from Nitro Circus built a similar ramp in my hometown of Salt Lake City, Utah, for a scene in the Nitro Circus where they would jump a trophy truck over it. During a break in the filming, and for the fun of it, I decided to jump it in my Wildcat. It’s a thrill to be asked to do this during Mesquite Off-Road Weekend. The fans will love everything about it.”

Tanner Godfrey is utilizing a special pole system to operate the accelerator and braking system during the jump. In the months following his crash, he and his grandfather, Dick Godfrey, came up with the system which—along with his positive attitude--has allowed Tanner to stay very active in his day-to-day life.

“Don’t ever let people tell you what you can or can’t do,” says Tanner. “Just live life. Don’t let things slow you down. You have to be tough to be successful. And if things go wrong, you have to jump right back on the horse and continue. You can’t let circumstances stop you because if you do, you’ll always have regrets.”

Tanner Godfrey was born March 18, 1989, and lives in Salt Lake City, Utah. He attended Alta High School where he was a wrestler. He also competed in motocross events. Tanner is available for phone interviews and/or certain in studio or on location appearances upon request.

About Mesquite Off-Road Weekend: Sponsored by the Mesquite Resort Association in Mesquite, Nevada, this off-road event will include two days of riding, with 5 ATV/UTV, jeep and side by side rides, covering the most scenic trails in the Southwest Area and the Nitro Enduro Challenge Races taking place on 100 acres of rugged desert dirt next to the Eureka Casino Resort. It will be great fun for the whole family! There will be a vendor area with food, drink and entertainment in the PowerSports Plaza, a Guinness World Record Jump attempt, and plenty of activities to keep everyone entertained. The VIP party Friday night will be one not to miss. The highlight of weekend will be the “Beyond Pro” exhibition race by Nitro Circus. Mesquite is easy to get to and located just off Interstate 15. From I-15 North or South, take exit 122 on to Pioneer Blvd. Turn right on Mesa Blvd and park at the Eureka Casino Resort. Special hotel room deals and rates are available for Mesquite Off-Road fans and participants.

There are two options for Mesquite Off-Road Weekend tickets. General Admission tickets give you 2-day access to the Nitro Enduro Challenge races AND the Nitro Circus “Beyond Pro” show plus the jump attempt in addition to access to the Powersports Plaza. VIP tickets get you into the VIP party on Friday night with Nitro Circus doing an exhibition show and the jump attempt. It also allows 2-day access to nearly 100% of the course and viewing from many locations for the Nitro Enduro Challenge races, the Nitro Circus “Beyond Pro” show, and access to the Powersports Plaza. Tickets range from $20-99.
For all information and to purchase tickets, visit . Follow on Twitter: @MesquiteOffRoad and Like on Facebook: Additional public information available at 702-345-4749 or
Media accommodations are available and interview requests for organizers/participants considered.

About Eureka Casino Resort: Family owned and operated since 1997, the Eureka Casino Resort is a newly renovated, 214-room resort located in Mesquite, Nevada. Eureka Casino Resort is a longtime supporter of the Wounded Warrior Project having hosted events including a Wounded Warrior Dream Wedding and Andre Carrier, President and COO of Eureka, is the founder of Christmas Can Cure, an organization that provides dream Christmas holidays for Wounded Warriors and their families. The hotel recently renovated each guest room, and built a resort pool and cabana with scenic views of Mesquite’s red-topped mesas. The casino is designed for guest comfort and features slot and video poker machines; table games include blackjack, craps, roulette, and more. The casino has Mesquite’s only 24-hour poker room with a race and sports book. The Eureka offers three full service restaurants: Experience: The Buffet, Mesquite’s largest and only live action buffet; The Mason Street Courtyard; and Eureka’s signature restaurant, Gregory’s Steakhouse. Eureka hosts weddings, corporate gatherings, and golf groups in its newly remodeled Grand Canyon Ballroom, Aquarium Meeting Room, and other meeting venues. Additional information is available online at

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Brian Hurlburt
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