New flying kilometre steam record – 148.308mph

Posted by jerry on August 29th, 2009 — Posted in Journal, Steam

The British Steam Car Challenge team have broken another record. This time for the flying kilometre (or kilometer if you’re American) with a two-way run averaging 148.308mph. This time the car was driven by Don Wales, nephew of renowned speed record breaker Donald Campbell.

Having recorded the new mile record at almost 140mph with driver Charles Burnett III, it was always envisaged that test driver Don Wales would take the kilometre record, and the team pulled out a couple of the limiter valves to squeeze a little more speed from the machine, dubbed the ‘world’s fastest kettle’.

By the end of their runs, the team hope to have five speed records under their belt – the world record for the mile, the world record for teh kilometre, the US record for teh mile, the US record for teh kilometre and the Guinness world record for a steam car.

The team is an insipiration to us all, persevering over countless hurdles for ten years to make this dream a reality. And a true team they are too – not only in agreeing to take turns in the glory, but in the full support team that prepares the car and that performs the refuel and turn-around to ensure that the car can do its second run within the allocated 60 minutes. And the team battled mechanical and electrical problems that arose from just being in a desert salt pan in the middle of the Northern Hemisphere Summer in temperature well in excess of the old (Farenheit) century.

But with ingenuity and determination, the team pulled together to achieve what no-one had successfully done in 103 years – so again congratulations to Don and Charles, and all the support team, fans and financial backers who made it all possible.


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