Two Jewish promoters said stunt driver Evel Knievel was a virulent anti-Semite.
The promoters publicized Knievel’s famous 1974 attempt to jump Idaho’s Snake River Canyon. One is suing Knievel’s estate for part of a judgment that was never paid after Knievel beat him with a baseball bat.
Knievel died Nov. 30 from pulmonary fibrosis at the age of 69.
Shelly Saltman, 76, had won $12.75 million in damages from Knievel in 1977 after the daredevil was convicted of beating him with a baseball bat over an unvarnished book Saltman had written about him. Saltman told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he is suing Knievel’s estate, claiming that the unpaid damages plus interest now add up to more than $100 million.
Knievel claimed that Saltman had portrayed him as “an alcoholic, a pill addict, an anti-Semite and an immoral person,” while Saltman said that he believed it was an accurate portrayal of a man he had admired.
Promoter Bob Arum, 77, called BoxingConfidential.com’s Michael Marley on the evening of Knievel’s death to remind readers of Knievel’s temperament.
“He used to always say the three things he hated the most were New Yorkers, lawyers and Jews, so I was three for three with this guy,” Arum told the boxing Web site in a call from his home in Albuquerque.