Next week an attempt will be made on the British motor-paced cycle land speed record that is currently held by Guy Martin. Inspired by the Great British tradition of ‘the shed inventor,’ the Operation Pacemaker team is looking to achieve the feat for under £1,000 with funds raised going to the British Heart Foundation.
Guy Martin set the current record of 112mph on the Pendine Sands as part of his TV series Guy Martin on Speed. He did what the Operation Pacemaker team describe as a ‘proper job’ – calling on all manner of experts and making use of a top truck racing team.
In contrast, the team making this latest attempt will be using a 20-year-old converted tandem found in a garage, with functional additions such as a walking stick, scrap car parts, scrap metal, knicker elastic, exhaust mounting rubbers from a 1989 Ford Escort and an ex-RAF parachute.
Here’s the parachute launch system in action.
The parachute is needed because the team is making its attempt on the Elvington runway, which is only two miles long.
The pacing vehicle, a 1998 Diesel VW Passat which has done 244,000 miles, will be driven by Dave Le Grys, whose motor-paced British record of 110mph stood for 27 years until it was broken by Martin (but only with advice and assistance from Le Grys himself).
Le Grys underwent open heart surgery in June after learning that he had a leaky heart valve which, under stress, was pumping more blood into his lungs than his legs. He has been recovering ever since and is aiming to race at Lee Valley Velodrome on December 8.
All involved have been affected by heart disease, either by conditions requiring open-heart surgery, or by the truly devastating sudden loss of a loved one. Donations can be made on their Just Giving page.
10 Days til testing !!! We're gonna set a record for speed or the longest face plant !!! Either way its for charity folks so chip in !!
— 115mph on a bicycle! (@BHFpacemaker) November 10, 2015