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  1. #26
    Thailand Expat AntRobertson's Avatar
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    You need balls of steel to attempt this sort of thing, the water-based records in particular.

    Which is ironic. Because those balls of steel would rust.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by AntRobertson View Post
    You need balls of steel to attempt this sort of thing, the water-based records in particular.

    Which is ironic. Because those balls of steel would rust.
    Your right Ant, but not just the driver the turn around crew need as well.
    You are 6 kilometre's of the course you can see the side of the car very clear as he's cranking 600-800 kph as it running down the course.
    Next minute you don't see the side of the car any more, you see the intake the front , that means the car is coming your way,there is a mad scramble leave your designated position.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratchaburi View Post
    Here yu go Bsnub
    Cool to see that the Aussies do hydros!

    It was very big around the Seattle area growing up kids used to build wooden hydos and race each other pulling them behind their bikes. Seafair just ended about 10 days ago here. I live minutes away from Lake Washington where the event is held and I go most years. Good fun to be had out on the log booms with all the boozed up boaters.

    This year one of the hydros the O'boy Oberto beef jerky boat (Oberto family are famous in Seattle for jerky and sponsoring hydros.) did a complete loop and flipped 60 feet into the air coming back down and landed right side up it was crazy. Watch this footage;



    From outside;



    A cool cockpit view of the final heat after it was restarted due to the above crash;


  4. #29
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    This beauty was intended to break Mickey Thompson's PB of 406mph back in 1968, but it got rained off and they never tried again.

    Tragically, Mickey was murdered before he and his son could try again, and the car was put in storage.

    This year fifty years after the first attempt, Mickey's son took it out and got it up to 448mph.

    What a nice story (link below).

    World Land & water speed Records-dkrlq-su0aa-y1m-1534184790-jpg




    https://www.roadandtrack.com/motorsp...-speed-record/
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails World Land & water speed Records-dkrlq-su0aa-y1m-1534184790-jpg  

  5. #30
    Thailand Expat AntRobertson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrybarracuda View Post
    What a nice story
    It is.

    Well, apart from the guy being murdered.

  6. #31
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    That was a great story I watch the Video a couple of days ago, the effect that go's into these Bikes,Boats & cars it is amazing.

  7. #32
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AntRobertson View Post
    It is.

    Well, apart from the guy being murdered.
    Yeah, but you can't have a happy ending without a tragedy in the second act.

  8. #33
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    A veteran Queensland drag racer has made an impressive start to his bid to become the world's fastest driver.

    Trevor Slaughter returned home on Monday, after setting a new Australian record in his home built car.
    The Queensland built Streamliner is rolled out on the seemingly endless flat surface on South Australia's Lake Gairdner.
    The race to a world record begins with a push start - it took 30 years to get here and less than three minutes for the first run.
    "I can honestly say that the exhilaration of when that car hooks up and pulls and gets up to speed and starts doing things... it's amazing, it's unbelievable," Mr Slaughter exclusively told 7 News.




    In the tiny cockpit, Mr Slaughter and a group of mates built the car in his garage at Logan. He raced it three times, hitting 408 kilometres per hour - faster than a jumbo jet on takeoff.

    If the 1600 kilometre journey home was flat, Mr Slaughter could've made it in just four hours, but he arrived today - three weeks after claiming Australia's land-speed record for three litre engines.
    "I dunno, you must get record fever or something, but I just want the next one and the next one," he said.
    Trevor now wants to double the speed he's already reached. He calls it 'Race to 800' - 800 kilometres per hour - a new world record for wheel driven cars.
    But first he'll return to the salt flats in August to go for the Australian record set in 1964.
    "That would be a very, very special moment for me.
    Then he'll fit a Chinook helicopter engine and try to become the first Australian to hold the world record.

  9. #34
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    Here is a chart with all the car that have brocken

    World Land Speed Record


    Since 1898, this distinction has changed hands 81 times among British, American, French, Belgian, German and Italian machines powered by steam, electricity, gasoline and jet thrust. That figure doesn't record all those who tried and never made it-the failures, glorious and otherwise. For more details on these drivers and their cars, go to my Land Speed Racing History pages.
    Date Driver Car Speed (mph) Speed (kph) Venue Notes
    18 Dec 1898 Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat Jeantaud 39.24 63.15 Acheres
    17 Jan 1899 Camille Jenatzy Jenatzy 41.42 66.66 Acheres
    17 Jan 1899 Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat Jeantaud 43.69 70.31 Acheres
    27 Jan 1899 Camille Jenatzy Jenatzy 49.92 80.34 Acheres
    04 Mar 1899 Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat Jeantaud 57.60 92.70 Acheres
    29 Apr 1899 Camille Jenatzy Jenatzy 65.79 105.88 Acheres
    13 Apr 1902 Leon Serpollet Serpollet 75.06 120.79 Nice
    05 Aug 1902 William K. Vanderbilt Mors 76.08 122.44 Abllis
    05 Nov 1902 Henri Fournier Mors 76.60 123.27 Dourdan
    17 Nov 1902 Augieres Mors 77.13 124.13 Dourdan
    17 Jul 1903 Arthur Duray Gobron-Brillie 83.47 134.33 Ostend
    05 Nov 1903 Arthur Duray Gobron-Brillie 84.73 136.36 Dourdan
    12 Jan 1904 Henry Ford Ford Arrow 91.37 147.04 Lake St Clair 1
    27 Jan 1904 William K. Vanderbilt Mercedes 92.30 148.54 Daytona Beach 1
    31 Mar 1904 Louis Rigolly Gobron-Brillie 94.78 152.53 Nice
    25 Jun 1904 Pierre de Caters Mercedes 97.25 156.50 Ostend
    21 Jul 1904 Louis Rigolly Gobron-Brillie 103.55 166.64 Ostend
    13 Nov 1904 Paul Baras Darracq 104.52 168.20 Ostend
    25 Jan 1905 Arthur Macdonald Napier 104.65 168.41 Daytona 1
    30 Dec 1905 Victor Hemery Darracq 109.65 176.46 Arles-Salon
    23 Jan 1906 Fred Marriott Stanley Steamer 121.57 195.64 Daytona
    08 Nov 1909 Victor Hemery Benz 125.95 202.69 Brooklands
    16 Apr 1910 Barney Oldfield Benz 131.275 211.261 Daytona 1
    23 Apr 1911 Bob Burman Benz 141.37 227.51 Daytona 1
    24 Jun 1914 L.G. Hornsted Benz 124.10 199.71 Brooklands 2
    17 Feb 1919 Ralph de Palma Packard 149.875 241.194 Daytona 1
    27 Apr 1920 Tommy Milton Duesenberg 156.03 251.10 Daytona 1
    17 May 1922 Kenelm Lee Guinness Sunbeam 133.75 215.24 Brooklands
    06 Jun 1924 Rene Thomas Delage 143.41 230.79 Arpajon
    12 Jul 1924 Ernest Eldridge Fiat 146.01 234.97 Arpajon
    25 Sep 1924 Malcolm Campbell Sunbeam 146.16 235.22 Pendine Sands
    21 Jul 1925 Malcolm Campbell Sunbeam 150.76 242.62 Pendine Sands
    16 Mar 1926 Henry Segrave Sunbeam 152.33 245.14 Southport Beach
    27 Apr 1926 Parry Thomas Higham Special "Babs" 169.30 272.45 Pendine Sands
    28 Apr 1926 Parry Thomas Higham Special "Babs" 171.02 275.22 Pendine Sands
    04 Feb 1927 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 174.883 281.439 Pendine Sands
    29 Mar 1927 Henry Segrave Sunbeam 203.792 327.962 Daytona Beach
    19 Feb 1928 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 206.956 333.054 Daytona Beach
    22 Apr 1928 Ray Keech White Triplex 207.552 334.013 Daytona Beach
    11 Mar 1929 Henry Segrave Golden Arrow 231.446 372.466 Daytona Beach
    05 Feb 1931 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 246.090 396.033 Daytona Beach
    24 Feb 1932 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 253.970 408.714 Daytona Beach
    22 Feb 1933 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 272.460 438.470 Daytona Beach
    07 Mar 1935 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 276.820 445.486 Daytona Beach
    03 Sep 1935 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 301.129 484.607 Bonneville Salt Flats
    19 Nov 1937 George Eyston Thunderbolt 312.000 502.102 Bonneville Salt Flats
    27 Aug 1938 George Eyston Thunderbolt 345.500 556.013 Bonneville Salt Flats
    15 Sep 1938 John Cobb Railton 350.200 563.577 Bonneville Salt Flats
    16 Sep 1938 George Eyston Thunderbolt 357.500 575.324 Bonneville Salt Flats
    23 Aug 1939 John Cobb Railton Mobil Special 369.700 594.958 Bonneville Salt Flats
    16 Sep 1947 John Cobb Railton Mobil Special 394.194 634.376 Bonneville Salt Flats
    05 Aug 1963 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America 407.450 655.709 Bonneville Salt Flats 3
    17 Jul 1964 Donald Campbell Bluebird 403.100 648.709 Lake Eyre 4
    02 Oct 1964 Tom Green Wingfoot Express 413.200 664.963 Bonneville Salt Flats
    05 Oct 1964 Art Arfons Green Monster 434.020 698.468 Bonneville Salt Flats
    13 Oct 1964 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America 468.720 754.311 Bonneville Salt Flats
    15 Oct 1964 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America 526.280 846.942 Bonneville Salt Flats
    27 Oct 1964 Art Arfons Green Monster 536.710 863.727 Bonneville Salt Flats
    02 Nov 1965 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America - Sonic 1 555.483 893.939 Bonneville Salt Flats
    07 Nov 1965 Art Arfons Green Monster 576.553 927.847 Bonneville Salt Flats
    13 Nov 1965 Bob Summers Goldenrod 409.277 658.649 Bonneville Salt Flats 4
    15 Nov 1965 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America - Sonic 1 600.601 966.547 Bonneville Salt Flats
    23 Oct 1970 Gary Gabelich The Blue Flame 622.407 1001.640 Bonneville Salt Flats
    04 Oct 1983 Richard Noble Thrust 2 633.468 1019.440 Black Rock Desert
    25 Sep 1997 Andy Green ThrustSSC 714.144 1149.272 Black Rock Desert
    15 Oct 1997 Andy Green ThrustSSC 763.035 1227.952 Black Rock Desert Mach 1.0175
    Legend
    1 - Not recognised by European Authorities
    2 - First mandatory two-way run
    3 - First pure jet powered car. Record only recognised by motorcycle authority, as car had 3 wheels.
    4 - Wheel driven record. A separate class from 1964

  10. #35
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    Here is a chart with all the car that have brocken

    World Land Speed Record


    Since 1898, this distinction has changed hands 81 times among British, American, French, Belgian, German and Italian machines powered by steam, electricity, gasoline and jet thrust. That figure doesn't record all those who tried and never made it-the failures, glorious and otherwise. For more details on these drivers and their cars, go to my Land Speed Racing History pages.
    Date Driver Car Speed (mph) Speed (kph) Venue Notes
    18 Dec 1898 Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat Jeantaud 39.24 63.15 Acheres
    17 Jan 1899 Camille Jenatzy Jenatzy 41.42 66.66 Acheres
    17 Jan 1899 Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat Jeantaud 43.69 70.31 Acheres
    27 Jan 1899 Camille Jenatzy Jenatzy 49.92 80.34 Acheres
    04 Mar 1899 Gaston de Chasseloup-Laubat Jeantaud 57.60 92.70 Acheres
    29 Apr 1899 Camille Jenatzy Jenatzy 65.79 105.88 Acheres
    13 Apr 1902 Leon Serpollet Serpollet 75.06 120.79 Nice
    05 Aug 1902 William K. Vanderbilt Mors 76.08 122.44 Abllis
    05 Nov 1902 Henri Fournier Mors 76.60 123.27 Dourdan
    17 Nov 1902 Augieres Mors 77.13 124.13 Dourdan
    17 Jul 1903 Arthur Duray Gobron-Brillie 83.47 134.33 Ostend
    05 Nov 1903 Arthur Duray Gobron-Brillie 84.73 136.36 Dourdan
    12 Jan 1904 Henry Ford Ford Arrow 91.37 147.04 Lake St Clair 1
    27 Jan 1904 William K. Vanderbilt Mercedes 92.30 148.54 Daytona Beach 1
    31 Mar 1904 Louis Rigolly Gobron-Brillie 94.78 152.53 Nice
    25 Jun 1904 Pierre de Caters Mercedes 97.25 156.50 Ostend
    21 Jul 1904 Louis Rigolly Gobron-Brillie 103.55 166.64 Ostend
    13 Nov 1904 Paul Baras Darracq 104.52 168.20 Ostend
    25 Jan 1905 Arthur Macdonald Napier 104.65 168.41 Daytona 1
    30 Dec 1905 Victor Hemery Darracq 109.65 176.46 Arles-Salon
    23 Jan 1906 Fred Marriott Stanley Steamer 121.57 195.64 Daytona
    08 Nov 1909 Victor Hemery Benz 125.95 202.69 Brooklands
    16 Apr 1910 Barney Oldfield Benz 131.275 211.261 Daytona 1
    23 Apr 1911 Bob Burman Benz 141.37 227.51 Daytona 1
    24 Jun 1914 L.G. Hornsted Benz 124.10 199.71 Brooklands 2
    17 Feb 1919 Ralph de Palma Packard 149.875 241.194 Daytona 1
    27 Apr 1920 Tommy Milton Duesenberg 156.03 251.10 Daytona 1
    17 May 1922 Kenelm Lee Guinness Sunbeam 133.75 215.24 Brooklands
    06 Jun 1924 Rene Thomas Delage 143.41 230.79 Arpajon
    12 Jul 1924 Ernest Eldridge Fiat 146.01 234.97 Arpajon
    25 Sep 1924 Malcolm Campbell Sunbeam 146.16 235.22 Pendine Sands
    21 Jul 1925 Malcolm Campbell Sunbeam 150.76 242.62 Pendine Sands
    16 Mar 1926 Henry Segrave Sunbeam 152.33 245.14 Southport Beach
    27 Apr 1926 Parry Thomas Higham Special "Babs" 169.30 272.45 Pendine Sands
    28 Apr 1926 Parry Thomas Higham Special "Babs" 171.02 275.22 Pendine Sands
    04 Feb 1927 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 174.883 281.439 Pendine Sands
    29 Mar 1927 Henry Segrave Sunbeam 203.792 327.962 Daytona Beach
    19 Feb 1928 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 206.956 333.054 Daytona Beach
    22 Apr 1928 Ray Keech White Triplex 207.552 334.013 Daytona Beach
    11 Mar 1929 Henry Segrave Golden Arrow 231.446 372.466 Daytona Beach
    05 Feb 1931 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 246.090 396.033 Daytona Beach
    24 Feb 1932 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 253.970 408.714 Daytona Beach
    22 Feb 1933 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 272.460 438.470 Daytona Beach
    07 Mar 1935 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 276.820 445.486 Daytona Beach
    03 Sep 1935 Malcolm Campbell Bluebird 301.129 484.607 Bonneville Salt Flats
    19 Nov 1937 George Eyston Thunderbolt 312.000 502.102 Bonneville Salt Flats
    27 Aug 1938 George Eyston Thunderbolt 345.500 556.013 Bonneville Salt Flats
    15 Sep 1938 John Cobb Railton 350.200 563.577 Bonneville Salt Flats
    16 Sep 1938 George Eyston Thunderbolt 357.500 575.324 Bonneville Salt Flats
    23 Aug 1939 John Cobb Railton Mobil Special 369.700 594.958 Bonneville Salt Flats
    16 Sep 1947 John Cobb Railton Mobil Special 394.194 634.376 Bonneville Salt Flats
    05 Aug 1963 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America 407.450 655.709 Bonneville Salt Flats 3
    17 Jul 1964 Donald Campbell Bluebird 403.100 648.709 Lake Eyre 4
    02 Oct 1964 Tom Green Wingfoot Express 413.200 664.963 Bonneville Salt Flats
    05 Oct 1964 Art Arfons Green Monster 434.020 698.468 Bonneville Salt Flats
    13 Oct 1964 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America 468.720 754.311 Bonneville Salt Flats
    15 Oct 1964 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America 526.280 846.942 Bonneville Salt Flats
    27 Oct 1964 Art Arfons Green Monster 536.710 863.727 Bonneville Salt Flats
    02 Nov 1965 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America - Sonic 1 555.483 893.939 Bonneville Salt Flats
    07 Nov 1965 Art Arfons Green Monster 576.553 927.847 Bonneville Salt Flats
    13 Nov 1965 Bob Summers Goldenrod 409.277 658.649 Bonneville Salt Flats 4
    15 Nov 1965 Craig Breedlove Spirit of America - Sonic 1 600.601 966.547 Bonneville Salt Flats
    23 Oct 1970 Gary Gabelich The Blue Flame 622.407 1001.640 Bonneville Salt Flats
    04 Oct 1983 Richard Noble Thrust 2 633.468 1019.440 Black Rock Desert
    25 Sep 1997 Andy Green ThrustSSC 714.144 1149.272 Black Rock Desert
    15 Oct 1997 Andy Green ThrustSSC 763.035 1227.952 Black Rock Desert Mach 1.0175
    Legend
    1 - Not recognised by European Authorities
    2 - First mandatory two-way run
    3 - First pure jet powered car. Record only recognised by motorcycle authority, as car had 3 wheels.
    4 - Wheel driven record. A separate class from 1964

  11. #36
    Fookin' Fumin'
    Dillinger's Avatar
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    Nice thread Rat

    Funny fact- Since 1940, 85% of the lemmings trying to break the water speed record have died trying.

  12. #37
    Thailand Expat AntRobertson's Avatar
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    That chart is interesting to see the progression to breaking the 100 mph mark and then it just sorta increases exponentially from there.

    All that and the internal combustion engine is still essentially the same as has always been (albeit those later records are rocket powered I assume).

  13. #38
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    The water speed record that's surprisingly hard to break


    While teams try to build a car that can go as fast as the speed of sound, other researchers are trying to break a more modest record – can a boat powered by human effort go faster than 20mph?

    On a cold day in October 1991, a team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) led by physicist Mark Drela set a record for the fastest human-powered water craft. Their hydrofoil, Decavitator, reached a speed of 18.5 knots (21.3 mph/34km/h) over a 100-metre (330ft) course on the Charles River that flows through Boston.
    Decavitator didn’t look anything like the hydrofoils that take you to your favourite Greek island. Rather, it was a catamaran with two thin hulls and a giant aeroplane propeller strapped to the back. A cyclist – Drela himself – was suspended between the two hulls, pedalling furiously.
    In the spring of 1993, the Decavitator team was awarded the DuPont prize for the fastest human-powered water craft. After its record-breaking journey, the craft was put on display in the entry lobby of Boston’s Museum of Science.
    Twenty-five years later, despite many attempts, the record remains unbroken.


    However, an Oxford University spinout called Animal Dynamics, co-founded by zoologist Adrian Thomas, is spending £200,000 ($260,000) to do just that. Their craft, the Malolo, is a hydrofoil-like Decavitator. Unlike its rival, the Malolo’s design is inspired by the way whales swim through water – instead of a propeller, it has the kind of large, arched tail that you sometimes spot above the water when a whale dives.
    Now two years after starting work on the project, the team have begun testing their third prototype off the south coast of England. According to Thomas, they have already reached speeds of about 12 knots (13.8mph/22km/h).




  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dillinger View Post
    Nice thread Rat

    Funny fact- Since 1940, 85% of the lemmings trying to break the water speed record have died trying.
    Just starting on the water speed records today

  15. #40
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    World Water Speed record holders

    Record holders


    Speed Craft Captain(s) Location Date
    70.86 mph (114.04 km/h) HD-4 Casey Baldwin Bras d'Or Lake 19 September 1919
    74.87 mph (120.49 km/h) Miss America Gar Wood Detroit River 15 September 1920
    80.567 mph (129.660 km/h) Miss America II Gar Wood Detroit River 6 September 1921
    87.392 mph (140.644 km/h) Farman Hydroglider Jules Fisher River Seine 10 November 1924
    92.838 mph (149.408 km/h) Miss America VII George Wood Detroit River 4 September 1928
    93.123 mph (149.867 km/h) Miss America VII Gar Wood Indian Creek 23 March 1929
    98.760 mph (158.939 km/h) Miss England II Henry Segrave Windermere 13 June 1930
    102.256 mph (164.565 km/h) Miss America IX Gar Wood Indian Creek 20 March 1931
    103.49 mph (166.55 km/h) Miss England II Kaye Don Paraná River 15 April 1931
    110.223 mph (177.387 km/h) Miss England II Kaye Don Lake Garda 31 July 1931
    111.712 mph (179.783 km/h) Miss America IX Gar Wood Indian Creek 5 February 1932
    117 mph (188 km/h) Miss England III Kaye Don Loch Lomond 18 July 1932
    119.81 mph (192.82 km/h) Miss England III Kaye Don Loch Lomond 18 July 1932
    124.86 mph (200.94 km/h) Miss America X Gar Wood St. Clair River 20 September 1932
    126.32 mph (203.29 km/h) Blue Bird K3 Malcolm Campbell Lake Maggiore 1 September 1937
    129.50 mph (208.41 km/h) Blue Bird K3 Malcolm Campbell Lake Maggiore 2 September 1937
    130.91 mph (210.68 km/h) Blue Bird K3 Malcolm Campbell Hallwilersee 17 September 1938
    141.74 mph (228.11 km/h) Blue Bird K4 Malcolm Campbell Coniston Water 19 August 1939
    160.323 mph (258.015 km/h) Slo-Mo-Shun IV Stanley Sayres, Ted O. Jones Lake Washington 26 June 1950
    178.497 mph (287.263 km/h) Slo-Mo-Shun IV Stanley Sayres, Elmer Leninschmidt Lake Washington 7 July 1952
    202.32 mph (325.60 km/h) Bluebird K7 Donald Campbell Ullswater 23 July 1955
    216.20 mph (347.94 km/h) Bluebird K7 Donald Campbell Lake Mead 16 November 1955
    225.63 mph (363.12 km/h) Bluebird K7 Donald Campbell Coniston Water 19 September 1956
    239.07 mph (384.75 km/h) Bluebird K7 Donald Campbell Coniston Water 7 November 1957
    248.62 mph (400.12 km/h) Bluebird K7 Donald Campbell Coniston Water 10 November 1958
    260.35 mph (418.99 km/h) Bluebird K7 Donald Campbell Coniston Water 14 May 1959
    276.33 mph (444.71 km/h) Bluebird K7 Donald Campbell Lake Dumbleyung 31 December 1964
    285.22 mph (459.02 km/h) Hustler Lee Taylor Lake Guntersville 30 June 1967
    288.60 mph (464.46 km/h) Spirit of Australia Ken Warby Blowering Reservoir 20 November 1977
    317.596 mph (511.121 km/h) Spirit of Australia Ken Warby Blowering Reservoir 8 October 1978

  16. #41
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    Now this was a good read https://www.wired.com/2003/03/cheating/

    Cheating Death


    The water speed record hasn't been broken in 25 years – in fact, it's taken the life of just about everyone who's tried. Now two next-gen rocket jockeys are taking on the old guard.
    The day was January 4, 1967, the place Coniston Water in England's Lake District, the time 8:40 am. After a swig of coffee laced with brandy, Donald Campbell slid into the cockpit of Bluebird K-7, his lapis-colored hydroplane, gave a thumbs-up, and ignited the 4,000-pound-thrust jet engine. Since 1955, he and Bluebird had cheated death to break the water speed record seven times. When he captured the land speed title in 1964, Campbell became only the second person besides his father, Sir Malcolm, to hold both records. Throughout the United Kingdom, the Campbells were legendary and the Bluebird an icon.

    This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Contact wiredlabs@wired.com to report an issue.

    There wasn't a hint of wind as Donald Campbell throttled to the other end of the mirror-smooth lake. Within seconds, he'd raced through the measured kilometer, at 297 mph. "Full house!" he radioed. Campbell had just gone 21 mph faster than anyone had ever gone before, putting him in a place where the effects of air and water on a boat were a mystery. But to establish a record sanctioned by the Union Internationale Motonautique, the powerboat governing body, requires two runs through the trap in opposite directions within an hour. Campbell started his second pass. At 200 mph, his eyeballs began oscillating as he hammered across ripples left by his own wake. "I can't see much, and the water is very bad," he said. At around 300 mph, Campbell felt like he was riding a turbine-powered paint shaker. "I can't see anything I'm having to draw back [on the throttle]." Suddenly, Bluebird lifted off the lake. "I've got the bows up!" he said. "I've gone… oh… "

    Bluebird rose up, somersaulted backward, and crashed nose-first in a hurricane of water and metal. Campbell's headless body wasn't found for 34 years.

    There are few endeavors more dangerous than excessive water speed, and Donald Campbell was neither the first nor the last to meet his end on an otherwise placid lake. In 1930, fellow Brit Henry Seagrave tried to top 100 mph in Miss England II. He hit a submerged log and died. Eleven years later, another Englishman, John Cobb, broke the 200 mph barrier on his first run, but crashed and died on his second. While the land speed record now stands at 763 mph, its watery equivalent is but 317.6 mph. And yet it's a mark so daunting it hasn't been topped since Australian Ken Warby set it in 1978. Since then, only Americans Lee Taylor and Craig Arfons have attempted the feat. Taylor died on Lake Tahoe in 1980, and Arfons died nine years later.

    Despite this grisly history, three different teams are readying assaults on the water speed record. They espouse radically opposing views on how to go about it. Record-holder Warby represents a long tradition of gutsy and innovative backyard tinkerers. He is being challenged by a new wave of entrepreneurs who put their faith in advanced aerospace technology. "Those other guys have a whole bunch of airplane and computer geeks behind them," says Warby, whose intuitive approach has served him well over 50 years of designing, building, and racing powerboats. "But this is fucking dangerous, and it's a boat, not an airplane. Their chances of breaking the record are absolutely zero, and I'm booking plans for two funerals."


    Mike Ruiz
    Russ Wicks, in Lake Washington with a model of American Challenge, aims to build a record-breaking empire. His boat is a result of topflight aerospace know-how.
    Those "other guys" are American Russ Wicks and Brit Nigel Macknight. Both men believe death haunts the water speed record only because previous contenders didn't understand the design limits of their machines. "Donald Campbell died because he had no way of measuring when the boat was going to fly," says Macknight, a lanky former aviation and auto-racing journalist from Nottingham. Wicks and Macknight think models based on computational fluid dynamics can help mold a fast, predictable, and stable aerodynamic shape long before the boat touches water. Likewise, onboard telemetry can monitor the craft's behavior and computer-augmented stability controls can keep the boat on the water when it starts to shake, rattle, and roll.

    All without breaking the bank, since even a well-funded speed record project has to get by on a fraction of the hundreds of millions of dollars spent by the average Formula One auto-racing team. Macknight and his Quicksilver team expect to spend $5 million to top 400 mph on Coniston Water and bring the record back to Britain. Wicks and his Seattle-based American Challenge team are shelling out an equal amount to hit 500 at Banks Lake, in eastern Washington, in a bid for the US. Both intend to run next winter.

    Warby isn't the only one anticipating a funeral, though. To Frank Dvorak, whose company Analytical Methods provides computational fluid dynamics analyses to Wicks' crew, Warby's low tech approach is ignorant folly – and suicidal. "If Ken Warby believes he can do it without high technology, he'll just become another statistic."

    The history of speed records is one of self-taught garage-floor engineering geniuses cobbling together one-of-a-kind machines that ride a thin line between glory and death. Throughout the 1960s, Americans Craig Breedlove and Art Arfons (Craig Arfons' uncle) battled each other for the land speed record – Arfons broke it twice and Breedlove five times. Both were creative, unschooled mechanics whose cars achieved speeds of 600 mph.
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    But it's one thing to go fast rolling across solid ground, quite another to do so pushing through a dynamic medium 800 times denser than air. To escape water's drag, speed boats must be hydroplanes, meaning that at high speeds they rise out of the water, leaving areas of only a few square inches, called planing surfaces, touching the water. The challenge is to maintain stability. Since every time speed doubles, aerodynamic lift is quadrupled, to go fast without taking flight requires the most delicate aerodynamic and hydrodynamic balance. When the craft is pushed down with airfoils, too much drag is created and the water wants to pop the boat up; if it's too light, the boat takes wing. Either way, you're dead.

    "There's a whole lot of uncertainty with the hydrodynamics," says Roger Gallington, a Wicks engineer with six years' experience on US Navy wing-in-ground-effect vehicles – aircraft that fly only a few feet above the ground. "There are good equations that tell us how planing surfaces react in a steady state, but a water speed record boat is actually bouncing along the water." At higher speeds, even small sheets of spray are powerful enough to affect the boat's stability. "We've looked at all the film we can get, and the craft start to dance around on the surface," Gallington says. "Boats have no suspension. They're like steel-wheeled vehicles driving down a cobblestone road. The craft leaves the water and crashes back down – that part is not well understood. It's hard to design a boat that's heavy enough to withstand those forces and not fly away, yet light enough to get up on plane."

    Ken Warby happens to be the only man alive who's done it. While his record-breaking Spirit of Australia is displayed in Sydney's Australian Maritime Museum, his new boat lies in a garage behind his ranch house in, of all places, a suburb of Cincinnati, Ohio. The story of how he got there is typical Warby. When he broke the record the first time, in 1977, he had no sponsors and his own government ignored him. When he set the record again a year later, he did so with $30,000 from Speedo, the then Australian-owned swimwear company. Afterward, the government gave him a stipend of $140,000 to showcase the prowess of Australian technology at US shopping malls. Never mind that Warby had designed the boat at his kitchen table and used about as much tech as a kid building a go-kart. By the end of his tour, he had become friends with Craig Arfons, a master builder of drag-racing cars. Arfons lived in Ohio. Warby asked Arfons to build him two funny cars. Meanwhile, he acquired his private airplane pilot's license and started a cement-mixing company in Miamitown. A quarter-century later, he's still there.

    Power tools litter Warby's dining room floor. An unfinished addition unfolds behind the house. At 62, he has a ruddy face, blue, twinkling eyes, and the callused hands of someone who has spent a lifetime building things. His paneled basement is filled with what he calls junk – citation after citation from the Australian Power Boating Association celebrating his speed records, balsa models of "designs I'm fucking with," and an order of the British Empire, one step down from knighthood, from "me mate, Liz" – Queen Elizabeth.

    "There she is," he says, opening the garage door to reveal his gleaming white boat sitting on a trailer. It is 28 feet long and fitted with an afterburning J-34 turbine capable of generating 6,000 pounds of thrust. He assembled it by hand. It cost $30,000 and is made of wood. It has no onboard sensors, no ejection seat, and no telemetry. And not a single line of its design emanated from a computer. "Shit no!" he says, "I'm not into that stuff. I call it eyeball engineering, and I could drive it in a jockstrap and sandals!"

    Warby decided to break the record when he was 13. At 16, he built his first powerboat. He craved speed but loved creating powerful machines from scratch with his own hands even more. It took him eight years to construct Spirit of Australia. He paid $65 for a used jet engine, and the whole boat cost $10,000. For a while he sold power tools, and when he was driving to see clients, he'd ponder design problems. "For a month, I'd think about nothing but the rudder." When his job got in the way, he quit, feeding his three kids by producing and selling homey oil paintings in shopping malls. He banged them out in minutes. And slowly but surely, he tinkered and tweaked and explored the limits of his boat as money allowed, until he had a vessel whose curves and nuances he understood as intimately as his own wife's.

    "I researched every damn angle of that boat," Warby says, popping a videotape into the VCR in his living room. "You've got to understand water and how a boat runs on it," he explains as we watch the Spirit of Australia howl across Blowering Dam in New South Wales on its record-breaking run. The water looks rippled, not the glassy surface of Donald Campbell's final attempt. "Campbell always wanted it billiard-table smooth, but I always believed that was wrong. A slight chop lessens the drag. It's a moving surface, and you can't go out and shave off or fill in the bumps and hollows," he says, pointing out the waves. "Everyone believes you can design it like an airplane, but you can't. I'm a pilot, and if your airplane pitches or rolls two or three inches, no problem. But if that happens on the water, you're dead."


    Warby shakes his head and says, "That guy in Seattle, Russ Wicks, wants to use a reverse three-pointer" – a boat that rides on one planing surface in the bow and two at the stern, like a tricycle – "but everyone who's tried one is dead. They have a slim aerodynamic shape and they work great in wind tunnels. But you can't scale water, and in reality they have balance problems. If you get on the front sponson, it'll turn you almost like a tricycle. I told Arfons he was going to die, and he did."


    "Wicks says he's gonna make his reverse three-pointer stable by having a computer adjusting things. But one-thousandth of a second isn't fast enough on a moving surface with lots of hills and valleys. The computer is dealing with what's behind you, not what's in front. My boat has inverted airfoils and all sorts of trick stuff that I can't tell you about in case Wicks reads your article."


    It's 2 pm on a dismal Seattle afternoon as Russ Wicks gives me a tour of his mini-mansion on the shores of Lake Washington. Actually, it's his roommate's, a founder of InfoSpace who was lucky enough to cash out before the stock market crash. Wearing black jeans and a Nautica sweater, Wicks looks a decade younger than his 39 years and seems worlds apart from Ken Warby. He has a hip haircut, a perfect tan, and manicured nails – and he's more comfortable talking about the boat as a "business platform" than he is about its technical details. "With modern technology and the right people, I think breaking the record is challenging, but not really that difficult," he says. We ogle the billiard room and bar, decorated with medieval weapons, before settling into two of a dozen La-Z-Boy recliners facing a 10-foot screen in the media room. Wicks rolls a slick two-minute promo used to pitch potential sponsors. "To me the biggest factor is a really smart operations plan with a strategic risk-management program," Wicks says, leaping from his chair when the clip ends and checking his watch. "We gotta go," he says, herding me into the car to head over to a team technical meeting at EDS PLM Solutions, a company that produces design software that will be used on the boat.


    Wicks' dream is less about beating the speed record than building a record-breaking business empire. As a kid growing up on a dairy farm outside of Seattle, he raced motocross and was fast enough to be sponsored by Honda. He attended race car-driving school instead of college but never managed to get into the big leagues. During the Internet boom, he lived high off of sales and marketing jobs. But he was always looking for that ride.


    One day in 1998, a friend of his who did PR for race cars and hydroplanes hatched a scheme. The oldest record in boating was the propeller-driven speed mark – then 200.4 mph. Top-end hydroplanes routinely accelerated close to this mark, but no one had gone for the record since Dean Chenoweth tried in 1979, in the famed Miss Budweiser. He flipped, got thrown from the boat, and suffered a concussion, eight broken ribs, a bruised heart and lungs, and a fractured pelvis. But Wicks and his PR buddy believed the reason no one had attempted the record since then was "voodoo" – people were just scared. And anyway, all the hydroplane guys were old farts who lacked the kind of personality that could attract high tech sponsors.


    With Wicks' good looks and connections, he had no problem getting a deal. Seattle's Freei, a free Internet service burning through $150 million, forked over a couple hundred thousand dollars, and a Seattle hydroplane owner offered his boat. The electric blue and yellow Miss Freei was born. In 2000, Wicks climbed in and broke the record, clocking a two-way average speed of 205.4 mph through the measured mile on Lake Washington. He had never even driven a hydroplane until two weeks before his stellar run.


    Wicks proved he could do two things: drive the boat without killing himself and round up the deals while seducing the press. Though old hands like Warby downplay the propeller-driven record ("Even a trained monkey could have broken it," Warby says), for a few heady months, Freei and its hydroplane were drowned in a media blitz, which included a 30-minute special on ESPN and coverage on all the major networks. Russ Wicks liked the attention. And he reasoned that, with technology advancing and becoming much more affordable, the barrier to the water speed record was similarly more voodoo than anything else. If he could assemble a stable of ace technical minds and hustle $5 million – $1.5 of it for marketing – he could go after the water speed record and in the process create a template for beating the land speed record, the world high-altitude free fall, and who knows what else. Russ Wicks could be an American Donald Campbell and keep his head. He'd preside over a company that showcased American technology as it reaped millions from TV deals, sponsorships, and merchandising.


    As we enter a conference room at EDS, design drawings lie across the table next to a blue wooden model that resembles an F-18 fighter jet with its wings cut to the stubs. Wicks taps a key on his laptop and the latest iteration flashes onto the screen at the front of the room. American Challenge will be 40 feet long by 18 feet wide, and its General Electric F-404 engine will generate 12,000 pounds of thrust. Another tap, and there's a design for the cockpit, including the canopy from an F-16 fighter and an ejection seat – which has never before been used on a record-breaking vehicle.
    "The overall concept is still fluid," says Ron Argust, a veteran of finite-element modeling and of computer-aided design, analysis, and manufacturing for companies ranging from Northrop to TRW. "Rather than waiting for it to mature and then putting the cockpit into that, why not define and design the cockpit separately, and then let the overall design concept mature around it. That's how it's done with fighters, and it'll be a great marketing tool." Heads nod. Wicks taps another key, and a complex cockpit instrument panel appears.
    Team member Dixon Smith shakes his head vigorously. "That looks like something on an airplane two generations ago, when the driver spent 80 percent of his time scanning his instruments rather than looking outside." Smith is a captain with United Airlines and a consulting engineer with the championship Miss Budweiser Unlimited hydroplane team. He lobbies for simplicity. "In Miss Bud, we have zero instruments and a couple of warning lights. The driver doesn't have time to look at gauges, and we can get all the info we need from real-time telemetry right to my laptop."
    Over the next hour, team members agree on a digital cockpit display, discuss the vagaries of designing the cockpit to keep Wicks from losing a limb if he needs to eject, and crack a few jokes about Warby's "technical team." Argust and Dave Knowlen, until recently Boeing's director of technical affairs, are creating American Challenge in solid 3-D models, a process nearly identical to, say, Lockheed's recent design of America's latest fighter, the Joint Strike Fighter. The designers are using Ideas design software shared via a secure Web site. All of them have access to the plans, which are instantly updated as changes are made. The sketches can be subjected to stress testing and computational fluid dynamics analyses as they mature, both ensuring structural integrity (a spar on Taylor's boat cracked before he flipped) and revealing the lift and drag of every piece of the craft. Numerically controlled machining can produce scaled wind-tunnel models quickly and cheaply throughout the process.
    "We're all working from a common database, so we can design different things – like the cockpit – in parallel, not in sequence," says Argust. "Even five years ago, you couldn't do that." The arrangement allows them to design the whole machine in 8 to 12 months "with a high degree of confidence," he says. "Guys like Campbell and Arfons worked around problems; we try to eliminate them."
    Once the boat is up on plane, leading-edge flaps and vertical-control fins linked to accelerometers and gyroscopes by an onboard computer will keep it stable. "We're taking this into the realm of a very high performance airplane," says Dave Knowlen, "and Russ is going to fly this boat."
    Which is an idea that makes British challenger Nigel Macknight apoplectic. Inspired by a TV documentary on Donald Campbell, Macknight was just 17 when in 1973 he cold-called Campbell's best friend and chief mechanic Leo Villa and lied about his age and family fortune (he had none) in an unsuccessful attempt to enlist Villa in a record-breaking attempt of his own. Fifteen years later, Anthony Hopkins portrayed Campbell in the BBC film Across the Lake. Macknight saw the film and called Bluebird designer Ken Norris, confessing his youthful sins. "Ken had a philosophical view on the blunders of youth," says Macknight, who then convinced Norris to end his guilt-ridden, self-imposed retirement from designing record-breaking vehicles. Under Norris, Quicksilver was born, although Norris, now 81, no longer has an active role in the project. Quicksilver will have no active aerodynamic controls. "In my book, if it has aerodynamic controls, it's an airplane skimming along the water, not a boat," barks Macknight. "Where do you draw the line?" Instead, his craft will have four hydraulically activated planing surfaces attached to load cells via computer that will measure the weight of the machine on the water, changing the position of the planing surfaces to adjust the boat's pitch. But they will not be moving dozens of times a second, as will Wicks' flight-control surfaces. Like Warby, Macknight believes they simply can't move fast enough. "Water is just too variable," he says. "Waves, ripples, spray, the boat's overpressure – it's like a nonlinear cobblestone road that is changing so quickly you'd always be several cycles behind, so our planing surfaces will move just 10 to 15 times during a run."
    A host of sensors – 86 on Quicksilver – will be key to both Macknight and Wicks' survival. These indicators will measure the crafts' parameters during every run and feed data to laptops on shore. "We'll take the boat to a target speed and look at the loads, and if everything is OK and it's behaving like it's supposed to, we can bump the speed up 10 knots," says Dixon Smith. "Gradually, we'll see the point at which it starts to flutter – and then we can stop before it's too late. That's something Donald Campbell or Ken Warby could never do."
    That, of course, doesn't bother Ken Warby in the least. "They better have some awful smart people programming those computers," he says. "When you look down that lake, you better have all your homework done, because your chances are 50-50 – and you better be in the right 50 percent. And you better be doing it for the right reasons. If I blow through the trap at 400 and nobody even knows about it, that's OK," he says. "I do it for myself, because I know I've built a better mousetrap." Wicks maintains his odds are better than even. If his technical brain trust does its job, he'll have little to do but keep the boat pointed down the speed lane and be the trained monkey of Warby's ridicule. And that's fine by him. "What Warby did was amazing," Wicks says, "but the era of brute force and guts is over."

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    The fastest boats on water: a look back

    propeller-driven boat

    In 2004, Dave Villwock and the Miss Budweiser averaged 220.493 mph to set the world record for a propeller-driven boat. It happened at Thermolito Afterbay in Oroville, California, breaking the previous rercord of 198.17 set in 1962.

    In order to qualify for the record, the boat must travel a kilometer course in both directions. The average speed of the runs is what counts. Villwock ran at approximately 213 mph in one direction and then approximately 220 mph in the other.
    But it wasn't without drama. The rudder mount and the prop shaft flew off the boat. The unlimited hydroplane coasted for another mile before it stopped.




    The One-Mile Speed Record
    Controversial driver Russ Wicks set the one-mile speed record for an unlimited on Lake Washington in Seattle in June of 2000. He did it in Dr. Ken Muscatel's U-25 Miss Freei. Amazingly, it was only two weeks after Wicks drove an unlimited hydroplane for the first time.
    Wicks got the U-25 up to a top speed of 221 mph, but his recorded average speed - a mile in each direction - put the record at 205.494.
    Pictured at the right is Wicks and the U-25 Miss Freei during a test run in Tri-Cities, WA in 2000.
    The one-mile record had stood since 1962 before Wicks established the new mark. The most recent serious attempt was made in 1979 when Dean Chenoweth was poised to break the mark, but a propeller failure caused the Miss Budweiser to flip into the air, destroying the boat

    A deadly record
    You have to really want the record. Nearly 50 percent of the drivers that have made a serious attempt at the world's water speed record have died trying. In 1980, Lee Taylor, a previous record holder, was set to attempt to break the record on Lake Tahoe in Nevada aboard the Discovery II. He never got the chance.
    Weather conditions prevented his attempt, but Taylor decided to five the crowd attending his attempt an exhibition run. His first run topped 269 mph when the boat apparently hit a swell, pulled to the left, and - according to witnesses - just fell apart. Taylor died. His body was pulled from the lake the following day. He was still strapped to the cockpit.
    In 1989, Craig Arfons built an all-carbon fiber boat, the Rain X Challenger. It took to the water in Jackson Lake, Florida, reaching a pseed of 263 mph. The Challenger went into the air and did several rotations. The boat disintegrated, killing Arfons.
    Donald Campbell had set a previous record of 276.333 mph in 1964 and was trying to set a new record in 1967 when he died.

    His boat and body weren't recovered until March, 2001 when divers in England pulled the remains of Donald Campbell's boat, Bluebird, from the bottom of Coniston Waters. Several months later, they would find Campbell's remains nearby.
    Campbell was trying for the record in 1967 and had topped 300mph when the boat's nose lifted, and the boat flew more than 50 feet into the air. The boat blew apart and Campbell was killed.

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    LIFE IN THE FAST LANE Who was Donald Campbell, when did he die and what speed records did he set during his life?


    The fearless record breaker followed in his famous dad's footsteps in the pursuit of speed and success

    DONALD Campbell was a record breaking adrenaline junkie who smashed records on land and water.
    Here's the lowdown on the speed freak who paid the ultimate price for his love of record breaking.





    Speed ace Campbell was determined to set a new world record after having many successes at Coniston Who was Donald Campbell?

    He was born on March 23 1921 in Surrey and was the son of speed record breaker Sir Malcolm Campbell.
    He inherited his love of speed from his motor racing dad who himself held 13 world speed records on land an water throughout the 20s and 30s.
    Donald went to Uppingham School and volunteered for the RAF at the outbreak of the Second World War.
    But he was barred from serving after suffering a bout of childhood rheumatic fever.
    Instead he joined the Briggs Motor Bodies Ltd company as a maintenance engineer.
    After that he was a shareholder in a small engineering company called Kine engineering, producing machine tools.
    Following his father's death on New Year's Eve 1948 and aided by Malcolm's chief engineer, Leo Villa, he resolved to set speed records first on water and then land.
    He was married three times and exceptionally superstitious, despising the colour green, the number 13 and thinking nothing good ever happened on a Friday.




    When did Donald Campbell die?

    He initially used his father's old boat Bluebird K4 in record-breaking attempt and set eight world speed records - seven on water.
    In 1960 he survived a horrific crash in the US while trying to break the land speed record, but it didn't stop him.
    On January 4 1967, Campbell jetted out on to Coniston Water in the Lake District hoping to break his own world speed water record in the Bluebird K7 boat.
    Television crews were in place ready to film him breaking the record, but tragedy struck.
    Travelling at more than 300mph, he lost control of the vessel and it flipped, killing him instantly and sinking into the depths of the lake.
    In 2001, the wreckage of the Bluebird was finally salvaged from the bottom of the lake, and Campbell's body was recovered.
    There is still huge interest in his life and achievements, with a book by David de Lara telling the tale of his fateful last hours.
    Campbell's lucky mascot - a 9ins "Mr Woppit" bear from 1956 - was also found on the lake bed.
    Speed record-breaking runs in the family.



    He followed in the footsteps of his dad Sir Malcolm Campbell, striving to set records on land and water Daughter Gina, who was 17 when Donald died, broke the women's world water speed record at 112.8mph in 1984.
    And Donald's nephew Don Wales also set the land-speed record for an electric car.
    On January 28, 1967 Campbell was posthumously awarded the Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct “for courage and determination in attacking the world water speed record.”




    The wreckage of the Bluebird K7 was finally recovered from the depths of Coniston in 2001

    Why did Donald Campbell choose Coniston?

    Donald's father Sir Malcolm had broken his final record on Coniston Water in the Bluebird K4 on August 19 1939, beginning the family's connection with the lake.
    Between 1955 and 1959, Donald broke the world water speed record on six separate occasions, four of them on Coniston Water.
    So in 1967, Coniston seemed the perfect place to try to set a new record - with the press and public having lost interest in earthly records after seeing a man in space.
    He was attempting to break his own record of 276mph and hit over 300mph when he crashed.
    Why did Bluebird crash?

    After his body was recovered in 2001, an inquest was held into Donald's death in which details of the crash emerged.
    The first run on the perfect "mirror-like" surface of the lake went well, but Campbell turned too quickly into the second run and hit his own wake.
    The nose of the modified Bluebird rose up and there was a "throttling back".
    Campbell applied the brakes but it was too late and the boat somersaulted and broke up, decapitating him in the process.
    The K7 vessel was already 12 years old at the time of the Coniston Water crash and was only designed to reach a top speed of 250mph.
    As it began to break up in a cloud of spray, Campbell said over his radio: “I can’t see anything… I’ve got the bows out…I’m going”.



    The 45-year-old remains the only man to ever break land and water speed records in the same year
    What records did he set in his life?

    Donald made his first unsuccessful attempt on the water speed record in August 1949.
    He eventually triumphed six years later, taking a new, jet-powered Bluebird to 202.32mph on Coniston Water.
    For the rest of the decade Campbell ratcheted up more records on water.
    After notching up his sixth – 260.35mph in May 1959 – he made an attempt on the land record that nearly killed him.
    In July 1964 he smashed the land speed record at Lake Eyre salt flats in Australia, recording a speed of 403.14mph.
    He then returned to the water, and broke the speed record again on New Year’s Eve 1964 – at 276.33mph on Lake Dumbleyung, Western Australia on the anniversary of his father’s death.
    He became the first and only person to set both records in a single calendar year.
    What is the world water speed record?

    The sport is considered one of the most dangerous competitions in the world, with a fatality rate of 85% since 1940.
    The current water speed record is 318mph, which was achieved by Australian Ken Warby in 1974 at Blowering Dam, New South Wales.
    Donald Campbell was Warby's childhood hero.
    He is the only person to exceed 300mph and live to tell the tale.
    Where is Donald Campbell's grave?

    After his body was recovered from Coniston on May 28 2001, a funeral service was held for Campbell.
    He was buried in Coniston Cemetery on September 12 after his coffin was carried down the lake - following the route his boat took - one last time.
    A DNA test was carried out on his body, still wearing blue overalls, and he matched with daughter Gina.
    His funeral was attended by widow Tonia, Gina and other family members, his former team and admirers.

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    Quicksilver
    World Water Speed Challange


    The quest to go faster on water has challenged both man and machine for centuries. Whether for trading, waging war, or simply winning a coveted trophy, the desire for higher speeds has been relentless. Modern-day challengers have a clear benchmark against which to measure their skill and ingenuity. The World Water Speed Record is the pinnacle of sporting achievement on water – a compelling contest played out on a backcloth of wind and wave, distance and time.
    The World Water Speed Record has a long and colourful history. Previous holders and challengers have included the Scottish-born, American-domiciled scientist, engineer and inventor Alexander Graham Bell, the fabled British soldier and author 'Lawrence of Arabia', and the legendary English 'speed kings' Sir Malcolm and Donald Campbell with their iconic Bluebirds.
    TheQuicksilver World Water Speed Record Challenge is a collaborative venture uniting highly-skilled individuals, firms and other organisations from across the broad span of industry and commerce, drawn together by the man who founded the project, author Nigel Macknight. The ultimate aim is to bring this prestigious international prize back to these shores after its long absence. TheQuicksilver craft is a new boat for a new generation. We are striving to extend the reach of human endeavour whilst advancing Britain’s technological achievements on the world stage.
    It is sobering to reflect that it is nearly 65 years since the last British boat driven to record success was built …
    Do we lazily leave it so that this dismal state of affairs persists, or do we try to show that Britain can do better? Apathy reigned to such an extent that the idea of Britain never holding the World Water Speed Record again was being passively accepted before theQuicksilver bid came to the public’s attention. It was easier to bask in the achievements of yesteryear than do something about the future. But Britain cannot rest on its water-speed laurels forever!








    Australia has held the World Water Speed Record for 41 years, in spite of competition from America. The record speed is 317.60 mph (511.11 kph). It is 51 years since Britain was the holder, way back in Donald Campbell’s era. TheQuicksilver team aims to break Australia’s long stranglehold on the record and return the trophy to our nation, which has made more water-speed history than any other.
    TheQuicksilver craft is steadily taking shape on a diet of loyal support, some small-scale private funding and an irrepressible enthusiasm for the task in hand. Our philosophy is to employ modern technology in design, construction and operation so as to increase safety margins very substantially beyond what has been feasible in the past.
    Difficulties that can dog a project of this type have come and gone, and we have had more than our fair share of expected and unexpected setbacks. Delays have been the inevitable result, but none of this has blunted our resolve to keep up the effort and ensure that a boat is put on the water fit for trials. At that point we will see how all the dedication and hard work has paid off, and no doubt the learning process will continue. The manifold challenges of achieving ultra-high speeds on water are not easily tackled. At the opposite end of the scale, apathy can be easily challenged – as it dissolves and is conquered by the simple act of doing something.
    We hope you enjoy learning more about theQuicksilver quest via these website pages.











    Quicksilver is said to be the largest and heaviest boat ever to contest the World Water Speed Record, and by far the most powerful. The machine is also unique in WSR circles in being a “four pointer” – meaning that when it is planing, it will ride on four planing surfaces. All of the previous planing craft designed for contesting the World Water Speed Record were three-pointers.
    The Quicksilver team believe that the four-point configuration will be inherently more stable than a three-point design. Proving that theory can only be answered when Quicksilver takes to the water at speed as part of the research programme that underpins the project.
    The Quicksilver project is managed by Nigel Macknight. The design was initially based on concepts for a rear-sponsoned configuration by Ken Norris, who had worked with the Campbells on their 'Bluebird' designs. As the project progressed it became clear that a different concept would be required. Ken Norris left the Quicksilver project and the design of the boat changed to the final front-sponsoned configuration in order to assure proper static and low-speed buoyancy and high-speed stability. Nigel Macknight has emphasised that though the design has changed significantly much of Ken Norris's design remains along with the inspiration that began the project.






    Quicksilver's design is of modular construction with the main body consisting of a front section with a steel spaceframe incorporating the engine, a Rolls-Royce Spey Mk.101, and the rear section a monocoque extending to the tail. The front sponsons are also modules, one of which contains the driver, an unbalanced arrangement that is hard to come to terms with.
    Before his passing Ken Norris said to our IP consultant that for the K7 they adhered to the rule that there should be no aerodynamic aids. He went on to say that rules are meant to be broken and the system adapts. The distinct impression was that Ken wished he'd ignored that particular rule and we hope that Nigel's team follow their instincts where common sense dictates.

    Current work includes sample testing of bonded structures to aid design of the horizontal struts that attach the sponsons to the main hull. This includes conducting test cycles with the samples fully submerged underwater.

    The current plan is to fit the rear hull section (stern module) followed by both sponsons in preparation for the first trials on water. In this initial waterborne form, the craft will be known as Quicksilver Dash 1 and speeds will be limited to 200 mph.
    SPECIFICATIONS
    Displacement: 3.5 tonnes
    Length: 11.8 metres
    Beam: 3.435 metres
    Height: 3.038 metres
    Structure: Aluminium, high-tensile steel, marine timber and composites
    Engine type: Rolls-Royce Spey Mk.101 low-bypass turbofan
    Rated output: 11,030 pounds static thrust at sea level (approx. max. 10,000 horsepower)
    Fuel capacity: 277 litres
    Fuel type: Kerosene
    Maximum fuel consumption: One litre per second at full power
    Electrical system: 24-volt DC
    SPEED ESTIMATES
    Speed record (average of two runs): 330 mph
    Peak speed on record runs: 350 mph
    Theoretical maximum design speed: 400 mph
    SALFORD UNIVERSITY - Salford's role is to test the design for pitch, yaw and roll - meaning that when Quicksilver approaches the record speed of 317mph, it won't veer off course or flip like Bluebird. Using the university's wind tunnel facilities, the team from the School of Computing, Science and Engineering is helping the British Quicksilver team test the aerodynamics of their craft. The current record was set in 1978 by Australian Ken Warby and Quicksilver are aiming to reach 330mph. But, as Salford project leader Dr Thurai Rahulan explained, there is more than just national pride at stake. He said: 'Our students are getting hands-on experience at the cutting-edge of aeronautical design by doing their own calculations on the project. 'We're also looking at how we can use our new understanding of forces and the technology to benefit ordinary passenger craft. 'The results can make ferries and other ships more efficient and able to achieve higher speeds using the same or less fuel.'



    Quicksilver team leader Nigel McKnight, who will be driving the boat during the record attempt, said: 'This will be the culmination of 20 years of planning for me and so it is vital that the boat is made as safe as possible. 'Salford's work in aeronautical engineering has a fantastic reputation and we are extremely grateful for their help.'

    BEGINNINGS - Reported Monday, 1 October, 2001 Rivals prepare for speed challenge
    British challenger Nigel MacKnight American challenger Russ Wicks



  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratchaburi View Post
    Now this was a good read
    Ya it was a good read but it was from 2003 and it looks like none of these projects is active for the most part. I will say this if there is a serious attempt to break that record I would but my money on a boat being built in Seattle. It is basically the headquarters for Hydroplane racing in the US. Most of the boats are built here and most of the talent pool is there. Lots of the guys that build these boats are also engineers at Beoing. That said there is no way that that record of Warbys is going to be broken on Lake Washington. That lake has way to much chop to get a boat up to that speed. If you watch the videos I posted especially the third one you can see how much the boats jump around in the water.

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    Here's Australia's Aussie Invader 5R


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    Donald Campbell has just been found!!! He came out of a water tap in Huddersfield.

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    Once owned by Sir Donald Campbell of Bluebird World speed record fame, his plane is currently forsale in Qld, Aust.

    https://www.planesales.com.au/detail...-Apache-160-hp


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    This woman has just done 296 kmh...






    ...on a bike!

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/sport/new...ectid=12127744

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    How a Boat-Plane Hybrid Shattered the Sound Barrier of Sailing




    World Land & water speed Records-ff_supercavitation1_large-660x456-jpg

    Seen from across Walvis Bay, the windswept patch of Atlantic Ocean known as Speed Spot is barely more than a sparkle of whitecaps against a long, low sandbar. As we get closer to what is one of the world’s most perfect speed-sailing areas, I scan the shore. It’s featureless save for two small shelters. We motor our zodiac toward the remote beach until we have to kill the outboard and tilt it up to spare the prop. The five of us jump overboard into the waist-deep water, following our guide, Paul Larsen, who is wading toward the shore. The wind howls in our faces, blowing so much sand that it runs down the beach in rivulets, like rain across a windshield. We climb up on the beach, jellyfish at our feet as thick as paving stones. “This is it. This is the Bonneville Salt Flats of speed sailing!” Larsen shouts, gesturing to the water just off the sandbar. The flying sand sticks to our teeth, turning the insides of our mouths to 600-grit with every word. “We’ll have to shovel out the timing hut,” Larsen says, peering into the primitive shelter he built years ago and pointing out animal tracks inside. “Jackal,” he concludes.

    There is a shipping port on the far side of the bay, but over here the landscape is so desolate, so extreme, that we could be on an alien planet—Frank Herbert’s Arrakis, George Lucas’ Tatooine. In fact, we are in Namibia, a roughly Texas-sized country at the southwest corner of the African continent. Walvis Bay is one of the Atlantic’s great natural harbors, but it’s surrounded by emptiness: 31,000 square miles of desert. The dunes march right into the sea, setting up an elemental cycle that repeats itself nearly every day of the antipodal summer. Mornings break as clear and sunny as a Baywatch shoot, but in the afternoon, near-gale-force winds descend on the bay. The desert heat meeting the cool Benguela Current coming up from the Cape of Good Hope creates a powerful natural wind machine. It arrives like clockwork, steady and relentless. “No ruffles,” Larsen says, feeling the wind with his hand. The featureless landscape—no vegetation, no terrain, no fences, no buildings apart from the shelters—makes for perfectly organized air. “Attached flow,” he calls it, using the jargon of an aerodynamicist evaluating a successful wind-tunnel test.

    Larsen is originally from Australia, but he searched the world for years to find this spot, a perfect natural runway to test a sailboat so radical that it is more at home in an airplane hangar than in any harbor—a futuristic craft that, if he can make it work, will not only capture the outright world speed-sailing record but also open up a new, no-limit era in sailing. “A hundred knots, maybe?” Larsen speculates from inside one of the huts, looking through a sandblasted window at the watery speed-sailing course just beyond the beach. The current record is just over 50.

    Floating behind the zodiac is the boat that has brought Larsen to Speed Spot for the tenth time in as many years in pursuit of sailing’s speed record: the Vestas SailRocket Mark 2. Its aeronautical DNA is obvious at a glance. There’s a rigid carbon-fiber “wing” that functions as a sail, an ultra-streamlined 40-foot-long “fuselage,” and even something like landing gear—three pod-shaped floats that keep the wing and fuselage above the chop. Yet what looks at first glance like a water-striding sailplane is, on closer inspection, pure crazytown. For one thing, its wing is inclined at a 30-degree angle to the water and is nowhere near the fuselage. Instead, it’s mounted on the end of a 30-foot-long beam. The pole is, in a sense, an odd sort of mast—except that it runs horizontally. On the opposite side of the boat is a bladelike carbon-fiber fin. Technically this is the keel, or as Larsen calls it, the foil. SailRocket’s foil sprouts from the side of its fuselage, then turns to cut 3 feet down into the water. Critical to any sailboat, a keel keeps a boat from blowing over—or, in this case, from flying away.

    “She’s 50 percent plane, 50 percent boat,” Larsen explains. Indeed, if SailRocket were dropped from a great height, it would glide down rather than fall. Larsen designed in aerodynamic stability as a safety measure. “If for some reason she lost the keel at speed,” Larsen explains, “than she really would be a plane, wouldn’t she?” The prototype version of SailRocket, Mark 1, actually did take off into the air, and Larsen survived what may be the most spectacular crash in sailing history.
    It was 2008 and he was at Speed Spot putting the Mark 1 through its paces when a gust got under the boat and launched it clear into the sky. The half-plane/half-boat hit an altitude of between 40 and 50 feet while cartwheeling through a flip—before crash-landing upside down and backward. “It just kept going up and up,” Larsen said at the time, “then it hit bloody hard on my head.”

    Larsen is confident enough about the stability of his revised design, the Mark 2, that he included a passenger cockpit behind the driver’s seat. It’s never held a passenger, however. “I haven’t installed the seat yet,” Larsen says, “but I’m going to have to test it out sooner or later …” He cocks an eyebrow in my direction. “Would that be good for your story?”

    In 1947, Chuck Yeager strapped himself into the experimental Bell X-1 “bullet with wings” and broke the sound barrier 8 miles above the Mojave Desert in Southern California. Larsen sees himself as following squarely in Yeager’s footsteps. To become the fastest sailor in the world, he’s going to have to break through the nautical equivalent of the sound barrier—the so-called 50-knot barrier (about 57 miles per hour). The name is something of a misnomer, because the barrier can drift slightly higher or lower depending on things like salinity and water temperature. But it doesn’t move too much, and when it kicks in, “it’s like driving your car into a wall,” Larsen says.

    That wall is caused by a phenomenon, still not fully understood, called cavitation. It’s familiar to every powerboater who has ever over-revved a propeller. At a certain point the prop will begin to “cavitate,” the water around it literally starting to vaporize. There’s a classic high school physics experiment where you put a glass of water under a bell jar and then pump out the air. Eventually the water bursts into a boil. The physics are similar with cavitation: The pressure drops at the trailing edge of a spinning propeller, and the water around it boils. When a prop cavitates, it stops generating thrust and starts generating bubbles.

    Boats rarely move through the water as fast as a spinning propeller, but when they do, they also cavitate. The enormous amount of drag created by bubbles attacking a boat’s keel will stop it from accelerating, in the same way that the piling up of sound waves can halt a plane’s acceleration. The hydrodynamics of the 50-knot barrier and the aerodynamics of the sound barrier are analogous—they’re both limits imposed by the physics of their respective mediums.
    Yeager pierced the sound barrier with brute force: He used a rocket engine. Under the right conditions, the brute force method can also get one through the 50-knot barrier. This is not just theory. The Russians proved it with their supercavitating torpedo, the Squall. Darpa has doled out millions of dollars in R&D contracts for the Navy’s Underwater Express program, which aims to build a supercavitating submarine. Supercavitating bullets shot from underwater rifles have even cracked the speed of sound. But a sailboat that can cruise at over 50 knots? It’s absurd. There is no such thing.

    Granted, some powerboats do go faster than 50 knots, but they’re simply sidestepping the cavitation problem. Speedboats, unlike sailboats, don’t have keels—they skip over the water instead of plowing through it. Most vessels, however, need some sort of keel in the water to stay upright, and sailboats need a keel to move. That keel functions as a hydrofoil, resisting the lateral pressure of the sail and creating forward motion. The challenge for Larsen is to somehow force a keel past 50 knots using wind power alone.

    With a radical new keel shape, Larsen thinks he has cracked cavitation. If he’s right, he not only takes the speed record for sailing, he also opens the door to an entirely new class of travel. “Just like with the sound barrier, once you’re through, you’re through,” he says, “and the equation for doing 100 knots or greater will have been written.”

    Back at Speed Spot, Larsen has just offered me a chance to ride shotgun on SailRocket’s test run, and I don’t have to be asked twice. I grab a GoPro camera and wade over to the boat. There is no ladder and no deck; the body of the boat is a long, low missile held a few feet above the water’s surface by its three floats. Getting to the cockpit is a challenge. It’s a matter of clambering up onto the front float, swinging a leg over the nose cone, and then using both hands to scooch down the fuselage, a couple of inches at a go.

    SailRocket is painted orange in homage to Chuck Yeager’s Bell X-1, but as I slide along, it’s Slim Pickens astride the H-bomb in Dr. Strangelove that comes to mind. Eventually I reach the auxiliary cockpit and climb inside. I’m in a coffin-sized carbon-fiber tube, with control ropes and coaxial cables running through the inside. It’s a tangle—half rigging, half wiring—but most of it eventually makes its way from Larsen’s cockpit past me and then down into the blackness of the tapering fuselage. The ropes control most of the boat’s moving parts. They maneuver the wing in and out and engage the hinge of the scythe-like foil, lowering it to its proper depth in the water. The cables send information back: the angle of the wing, the angle of the rudder. Larsen’s cockpit is wired with digital readouts, since he can’t actually see either the wing or the rudder from where he sits up front. My cockpit has the GPS unit, which will track our speed.

    Larsen straps himself in. SailRocket is probably the only sailboat in the world that comes with a five-point seat belt harness as standard equipment. He’s angled low, hands on a tiny steering wheel nearly between his knees, his helmet just peeking over the edge of the cockpit. He might as well be driving a top-fuel dragster. He looks out over the nose cone, which is angled slightly down like that of the Concorde jet, the better to keep the boat glued to the water. I position myself facing aft like a tail gunner so I can see how the boat works. The wing is on the port side of the boat (Larsen’s left, my right), and the foil is to starboard. Larsen and I are back-to-back. “The main thing,” he says over his shoulder, “is to stay clear of the ropes.”

    As Larsen mentioned, there is no seat installed in my cockpit (much less a five-point harness), so I’m on my knees, being careful not to touch any of the lines. They’re vibrating with tension and a clear hazard. The cables I’m not so worried about, because a gremlin has already gotten into the wiring harness—Larsen’s wing and rudder readouts are on the fritz. He’ll be piloting this run blind, sailing by feel alone. As I crouch down, I consider what would happen if we ended up in one of the catastrophic crashes that plagued Mark 1. From where I sit, a high-speed bailout seems like a really bad idea. Hitting the beam to port would obviously break every bone in my body, while the foil on the other side looks like it could slice me in half.

    World Land & water speed Records-ff_supercavitation3_large-jpg


    While SailRocket is being dragged upwind and into position by the team on the zodiac, Larsen gives me the preflight briefing. The wind is blowing at 30 knots or so, which is ideal. However, my extra weight means that it may be hard to get SailRocket‘s front float to “plane”: That’s the point where buoyancy is replaced by hydrodynamic lift and SailRocket‘s floats stop bobbing in the water and start to skim across it. So there are no guarantees. But with a thumbs-up, Larsen signals to the zodiac to let us go, and he starts the launch procedure.

    “The wing is fully stalled,” Larsen reports. “We’re being pulled along like a square rigger.” Since every element of SailRocket—the wing, the foil, the aerodynamic streamlining—is optimized for high speed, the real challenge to sailing it is getting the boat started. Moving the rudder doesn’t have much effect at low speed, yet to accelerate you need to get the boat pointed in the right direction.

    “I’m at full lock with the steering,” Larsen says after a frustrating minute or so. “There’s just too much drag to let the nose come around.” In other words, there’s too much cargo for this bird to fly. We’ve drifted nearly halfway down the course in a dud start. I’m wondering about lunch. But Larsen says, “Let’s try it again.”

    Continues at:

    https://www.wired.com/2013/01/ff-pau...ailrocket/all/
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails World Land & water speed Records-ff_supercavitation1_large-660x456-jpg   World Land & water speed Records-ff_supercavitation3_large-jpg  
    A tray full of GOLD is not worth a moment in time.

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