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Posted by : Ray Wakefield - Date: 23 March 2006 at 15:02

The British Steam Car Challenge project, which expects to establish a new steam powered vehicle speed record on Verneuk pan in the Northern Cape, is working on a revised engine installation which will necessarily delay completion of the car – called Inspiration.

Recent boiler and dynamometer tests revealed a problem with boiler efficiency. Resolving this has, in turn, caused a packaging difficulty within the current body design. A revised installation is being devised that does not adversely affect the aerodynamic performance of Inspiration or its power output - both factors critical to reaching the projected top speed of more than 200 mph. (320 kph).

However, the project team is conscious that 2006 is the anniversary of the current land speed record for a steam powered car – held by Fred Marriott, driving a Stanley Steamer, and established in 1906.

Project Manager, Frank Swanston, said: “Unfortunately, setbacks are inevitable with such a technically complex project as this. We are still working as hard as ever to complete the car this year and attempt the records.”

Team Inspiration are working in close co-operation with Speedrecord S A, and further updates will be posted on this site in due course.


Posted by : Ray Wakefield - Date: 23 March 2006 at 15:02

Following a suggestion by Ray Wakefield, of Speedrecord S A, Johan Jacobs, holder of the South African outright Land Speed Record, and the National 1 Km Standing Start Record, will attempt to set a new World Standing Start Record over a distance of One Mile later this month.

He will make his bid on Verneuk pan in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa on Thursday, June 29th 2006.

The currently registered record was set in 2004 by the Hydrogen powered BMW H2R at 97.693 mph, but this has recently been eclipsed by Englishman Tony Moir, driving a 250cc racing Kart - with no supercharging or aerodynamic modifications. His two way average, for International and British Class records (up to 250cc) for the 1 mile standing start, is now a speed of 98.09 mph. This is at present still awaiting official confirmation as a new World Record by the FIA.

Johan will be driving his jet-powered Castrol Edge Showdown dragster. This has rather more power than even the quickest Kart, and barring any problems, should give Jacobs no difficulty in raising the bar on this one by a considerable degree!

Speedrecord SA will be covering this attempt, and a report will appear on this site in due course..

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