Evel Knievel Net Worth at Death: Salary, Income, Earnings

Evel Knievel, the American daredevil motorcyclist and entertainer, had a net worth of $3 million at the time of his death in 2007. Known for his ambitious and risk-taking motorcycle jumps, Knievel achieved fame and captivated audiences with his death-defying stunts.

From his early career beginnings in local ski jumping events to performing at major venues like Caesars Palace, Knievel’s daredevilry propelled him to national and international recognition.

Despite facing numerous injuries and setbacks throughout his career, Knievel’s determination and passion for thrill-seeking allowed him to leave an indelible mark on American pop culture. Today, his net worth stands as a testament to his enduring legacy as one of the greatest daredevils in history.

Here’s the breakdown of his net worth:

Name:Evel Knievel
Net Worth:$3 Million
Monthly Salary:$50 Thousand
Annual Income:$1 Million
Source of Wealth:Stunt Performer

Learn more: Richest Race Car Drivers in the World

Early Life and Career Beginnings

Born as Robert Craig Knievel in 1938 in Butte, Montana, Evel Knievel was the eldest of two children. Raised by his paternal grandparents after his parents’ divorce, Knievel developed a passion for adventure from a young age. As a teenager, he attended Butte High School but left after his second year to work as a diamond drill operator in the copper mines of the Anaconda Mining Company.

Knievel’s thirst for excitement led him to participate in local ski jumping events and professional rodeos, where he achieved numerous championships. In the late 1950s, he joined the United States Army and even competed as a pole vaulter on the track team. Although he briefly considered pursuing a career in hockey, he ultimately started the Sur-Kill Guide Service, a hunting service, to support his growing family.

In 1961, Knievel embarked on a hitchhiking journey from Butte to Washington, D.C., raising awareness about the harmful culling of elk in Yellowstone. Upon his return, he joined the motocross circuit but suffered injuries that temporarily halted his pursuit. Knievel later found success selling insurance before ultimately deciding to leave his job when denied a promotion to vice president.

The Birth of a Daredevil

Moving to Moses Lake, Washington, Knievel opened a Honda motorcycle dealership, which unfortunately closed due to the challenges of selling Japanese imports. Undeterred, he joined the motorcycle shop of Don Pomeroy in Sunnyside, Washington, where he learned a pivotal skill: how to perform a wheelie while standing on the seat of his bike, thanks to Jim Pomeroy’s guidance.

Inspired by a daredevil auto show he witnessed as a child, Knievel set out to create his own stunt show. He began with daring wheelies and then progressed to jumping over a box of rattlesnakes and a pair of mountain lions. Seeking greater financial success, Knievel partnered with sponsor Bob Blair, the owner of ZDS Motors, Inc., and distributor for Norton Motorcycles.

In 1966, Knievel and his team of daredevils debuted at the National Date Festival in Indio, California, which proved to be a resounding success. He subsequently performed in various towns across the country, captivating audiences with his motorcycle jumps over cars and other thrilling stunts.

Knievel’s fame grew exponentially after his appearance on “The Joey Bishop Show” in 1968, gaining national exposure and solidifying his status as a legendary daredevil.

Evel Knievel

Triumphs and Tragedies

One of Knievel’s most memorable jumps took place at Caesars Palace in 1967, where he attempted to clear the fountains, spanning an astonishing 141 feet. The jump ended in a crash, leaving him hospitalized for weeks. However, the incident and its televised coverage propelled Knievel to unprecedented levels of fame. Despite subsequent crashes, he achieved numerous successful jumps throughout 1968, captivating audiences with his daredevilry.

In 1971, Knievel set a world record by jumping over 19 cars in Ontario, California. Although his dream of jumping the Grand Canyon was prohibited by the government, he turned his sights to Idaho’s Snake River Canyon in 1974. The following year, Knievel entertained audiences with his motorcycle jumps on ABC’s “Wide World of Sports,” attempting feats in locations like London’s Wembley Stadium, King Island in Ohio, and the Seattle Kingdome.

After an unsuccessful attempt to jump over a tank of live sharks in Chicago in 1977, Knievel retired from major performances. However, he continued to support his son, Robbie, in his own daredevil career by making appearances at smaller venues. Knievel’s final on-tour appearance took place in Hollywood, Florida, in 1981.

Life Beyond Stunts

In the following years, Knievel embarked on a new chapter of his life. He traveled across the country, selling artwork he allegedly created, and participated in marketing campaigns for brands such as Harley-Davidson, Little Caesars, and Maxim Casino. In 2003, he even signed over the rights to create a rock opera based on his life.

In 2005, Knievel organized his last promotional event—a “ride” at a Harley-Davidson dealership in Milwaukee—to raise funds for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. Unfortunately, due to a mild stroke, he was unable to participate in the actual ride. Throughout his life, Knievel faced several health challenges, including a life-saving liver transplant in the late 1990s and a terminal lung disease diagnosed in 2005.

On November 30, 2007, Evel Knievel passed away at his residence in Clearwater, Florida, leaving behind a legacy that continues to inspire thrill-seekers and fans worldwide.

Evel Knievel Quotes

Anybody can jump a motorcycle. The trouble begins when you try to land it.


If you don’t know about pain and trouble, you’re in sad shape. They make you appreciate life.


You come to a point in your life when you really don’t care what people think about you, you just care what you think about yourself.


I decided to fly through the air and live in the sunlight and enjoy life as much as I could.


Where there is little risk, there is little reward.

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