Olympic medallist Craig MacLean has set a speed of an astonishing 142 miles an hour on a Rollapaluza rig – using the Rourke bike that was built for Isle of Man TT racer Guy Martin for his TV series Speed last year, when he set a new British draft-assisted record of 112mph.
Like Martin, the benchmark time that MacLean was targeting had been set by Dave LeGrys, although according to Rollapaluza, ahead of the event at London’s Look Mum No Hands, “it was not clear just what the potential maximum speed would be, or indeed if it would be even possible to get the huge 380 inch gear turning without the ‘tow’ required when the bike is on the road.”
MacLean, his calves strapped with gaffer tape to provide clearance from the bikes double transmission, posted a time of 11.34 seconds for 500 metres – that’s an average of 99.2mph from a standing start, and 142mph in the maximum speed test.
The 42-year-old is one of only two athletes to have won medals at both the Olympic and Paralympic Games; in 2000, he helped Great Britain take silver in the team sprint at the Olympic Games in Sydney, and in 2012 in London he acted as pilot to Anthony Kappes, the pair winning gold in the men’s sprint (B) at the Paralympic Games.
The best women’s times were set by Jennifer Crouch, with 14.09 seconds for the 500m and 113.1 mph maximum speed – even though she was the only rider taking to a Rollapaluza rig for the first time.
Rollapaluza says that while there are a variety of stationary bike records, there does not appear to be an official one, pointing out that Bruce Bursford's speed of over 300kmh was achieved on powered rollers that took him to 100mph before he made his attempt.
Caspar Hughes from Rollapaluza added. "Dave Legrys' 1986 record of 126 mph was always our target and reference point for this attempt, though ultimately the challenge was to see how fast it was possible to go using this amazing bike and our regular rigs, so we won't be calling Guinness."
Here are the results:
Craig MacLean (Dolan Bikes): 142 mph / 227 kph
Rob Reed (The Bicycle Society): 134.1mph / 214.6kmh
James Sullivan (Brixton CC): 130mph / 208kmh
Atiba Quildan (Twickenham CC): 120.4mph / 192.6kmh
Craig Maclean (Dolan Bikes): 11.34 seconds (average cadence 88.2rpm)
Rob Reed (The Bicycle Society): 11.70 seconds
Atiba Quildan (Twickenham CC): 12.06 seconds
James Sullivan (Brixton CC): 12.50 seconds
Jennifer Crouch (London Dynamo): 113.1mph / 181kmh
Sam Sullivan (Brixton CC): 107.8mph / 172.5kmh
Jennifer Crouch (London Dynamo): 14.09 seconds
Sam Sullivan (Brixton CC): 14.25 seconds
Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.