NOW I’M GOING TO DROWN

by

The following transcript is verbatim from a portable recorder operated by voice-over announcer Jim Economides and his recording engineer, Bill Robinson. While producing a vérité sound f/x record, they were stationed at an observation station manned by United States Auto Club (USAC) timer Joe Petrali. After Craig went zooming past their stations with his parachutes shredded to ribbons, Economides and Robinson gave hot pursuit in their rented vehicle, whereupon they continued to roll tape at the final rest of the SOA. This is unexpurgated documentation of the return leg of the record run, when Breedlove became the first driver to eclipse the 500 mph mark.

Breedlove sounds adenoidal and like a chipmunk, giddy and vaguely bi-polar. He also sounds very glad to be alive.

USAC Official: He’s on his way… he’s standing on it… they say he’s really standing on it now… nice and straight… he’s really rolling… into the mile…

VOICE: I see a smoke trail.

USAC: … something fell off of the car… that must be the chute… wait a minute, something fell off of the back of the car… he lost his chute…

VOICE: I hope it was his chute…

USAC: … he lost his chute…

VOICE: Before he hit the trap or after?

USAC: He didn’t say it’s out … I see him coming… he’s really coming along, he’s really pouring it on… here he comes…

VOICE: … heads up….

USAC: He’s approaching the finishing line … he’s past the finishing line…

VOICE: … he’s got no chute…

(pppphhhhhweeeeeeeeWHHHHHAAAAAAAHHHHHHH…..)

VOICE: … OOHH!!!

(trucks and support vehicles roll, horns honk, general commotion as reporters dictate to machines)

VOICE: … what a thrill for the people…

VOICE: He’s in the water…

USAC: He’s in the water…

VOICE: He’s in the water…

USAC: Better roll the ambulance down here… roll the ambulance… I’ll roll down there… okay… I’ll roll …

(tape rolls out)

BREEDLOVE: (deep breaths and laughter) Unnnhhhh, hunnhhh…

VOICE: Suppose you’ll get a water speed record on that too?

BREEDLOVE: I think so.

VOICE: Who do you think you are? Cobb or somebody?

BREEDLOVE: What a ride! Uhh hnnnuhhh… “FOR MY NEXT TRICK!”

(laughter)

(more laughter)

VOICE: (unintelligible overlapping dialogue)


BREEDLOVE: “I’ll set myself… a-fire… “

VOICE: … son of a bitch…

BREEDLOVE: I went over the top of that 10 mile light. Did I break it? Did I break the record?

VOICE: Yeah…

BREEDLOVE: Okay.

VOICE: We didn’t wait to see…

VOICE: You went right over the top of it…

BREEDLOVE: If Petrali missed the time on that, boy, he’s out of business.

(laughter)

BREEDLOVE: I’m not doing it again!

(laughter)

VOICE: Jeez-us

VOICE: Look out now…

(shutters click)

VOICE: Holy Mackerel…

VOICE: See you had to swim there… That was an underwater job!

VOICE: Yeah.

VOICE: Craig that was a tremendous run, though. It looks like you broke the record by a big margin.

BREEDLOVE: I obviously did!

(laughter)

VOICE: It can’t stand another one though …

BREEDLOVE: Hey, you did a pretty good job with that course, old buddy…

(laughter)

VOICE: He was really steerin’. I thought you were going to go right by here and you might not make it in this water…

VOICE: I tell you that was the last we expected…

BREEDLOVE: PHHWEEEHHH!!

VOICE: … to see of ol’ Craig Breedlove…

BREEDLOVE: (off mic and distorted) Roy, you wouldn’t believe it!

VOICE: I’ll tell you one thing, you’re spectacular, man.

(commotion)

VOICE: I wonder what the people are going to…

BREEDLOVE: (shouts) WHAT’S MY TIMES? NOBODY WAITED TO GET IT!!

VOICE: Nobody waited to get it!

BREEDLOVE: How fast did I go?

VOICE: Let’s all get in this four-wheel drive…

BREEDLOVE: (shouts) HOW FAST DID I GO??

VOICE: (off mic) Nobody heard, Craig.

BREEDLOVE: Hey… Hey Bill… For my next trick I’ll set myself afire! (laughs)

VOICE: Well, you did a beautiful job on the car. (laughs)

BREEDLOVE: (deep breaths) Hunnnnhhhh! Hunnnnnhhh… Did you see what I did to that telephone pole, Nye?

VOICE: Jeez-us…

BREEDLOVE: I damn near drowned… look at the racer!

VOICE: Craig, here’s your dad….

(commotion, heavy breathing, more commotion, unintelligible)

VOICE: Oh my god… Oh my god…

BREEDLOVE: I’m okay, Pop.

(commotion)

BREEDLOVE: At least we went 500… (deep breaths and laughter) unnnhhhh, hunnhhh…

(commotion)

BREEDLOVE: I damn near drowned in that thing! I couldn’t get out!

(commotion, overlapping dialogue)

VOICE: You know, you should get a skin diving license.

(commotion, overlapping dialogue)

BREEDLOVE: (unintelligible) … spectacular. If Petrali missed that time he’s fired!

(laughter) (film camera rolls) (commotion, overlapping dialogue)

VOICE: He’s the first guy to try and set a Land Speed Record and a Water Speed Record at the same time!

BREEDLOVE: (off mic) I lost my steering at the (unintelligible) mile.

VOICE: You did?

BREEDLOVE: The brakes just burned up.

VOICE: They did?

BREEDLOVE: I put my chutes out after I cleared the mile because I lost my steering.

(commotion, overlapping dialogue) (film camera rolls)

VOICE: You put out both of them didn’t you?

BREEDLOVE: Well the first chute, I pulled it, it just went to shreds. I felt it go to a ribbon. Then I hit the… I waited for a while and I tried to hit the brakes and the brakes just wouldn’t go… I was pumping the brakes and then nothing, no brakes at all. Then I hit my other chute and nothing happened. I didn’t have any… I just took that…

VOICE: No steering…

BREEDLOVE: … steering and I turned it clear around like this. It finally started…

VOICE: (interrupts) Did you see that…

BREEDLOVE: … coming around.

VOICE: … telephone pole that you sheared?

BREEDLOVE: Yeah, I know. I hit the pole.

VOICE: With your right fin or what?

BREEDLOVE: I just saw that pole coming and I went just like that…

VOICE: (whistles)!

BREEDLOVE: … and then I hit the pole. I thought I had it when I hit the pole. I saw that telephone pole coming and I went “Ooohhh” and I gritted my teeth.
(laughter) (film camera rolls) (commotion, overlapping dialogue)

BREEDLOVE: (loud, over laughter) I gritted my teeth and that pole just sheared off like nothing. You know, “DOUMM” and no pole! (breathes in) UUNNHH… I looked up and I thought, “Oh Boy! Another chance!”

VOICE: (giddy laughter)

BREEDLOVE: I looked up…

VOICE: (giddy laughter)

BREEDLOVE: … I hit the water and the water started slowing me down and I seen (sic) this big old bank coming up and I thought, “OHHH NAWWWW.” (laughs)

VOICES: (giddy laughter)

BREEDLOVE: I hit the bank and it just went right over the top there. I was flying through there about thirty feet in the air and I thought, “NOW I’M GOING TO DROWN!”

VOICE: (uproarious laughter)

BREEDLOVE: I couldn’t get the canopy off. I tried to get my belt done. I couldn’t get my mask off and the water was filling up like that…

VOICE: … Next run scuba gear…

BREEDLOVE: … and I thought, “What a way to go! After all this and now I’m going to drown!”

VOICES: (uproarious laughter)

VOICE: Next run, scuba gear, baby!

(shutters click)

BREEDLOVE: (giddy laughter) I broke the racer! (giddy laughter). Everything’s okay… How fast did I go, dammit? (giddy laughter) (shouts) DID WE BREAK THE RECORD?!

VOICE: (shouts) WHAT WAS THE TIME?

BREEDLOVE: (shouts) WHAT WAS THE TIME? (giddy laughter)

VOICES: (commotion, overlapping dialogue)

BREEDLOVE: (clears throat) Will somebody tell me how fast I went?

(giddy laughter)

VOICE: Hey Craig! You set a boat record!

VOICES: (giddy laughter) (commotion, overlapping dialogue)

VOICE: C’mon, let’s go and (unintelligible).

BREEDLOVE: I want to find out how fast I went, man!

VOICE: Where? In the water or in the…

BREEDLOVE: Hey Al! What was it?

VOICE: 526 average. 535 coming back.

VOICE: (reading off time slip) Mile is 539 point eight nine. The kilo was 535 point four-oh. And the average for both ways was 526 point two eight. And the kilo was 527 point three three.

(tape rolls out)

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