With the Bloodhound SSC completing its shakedown runs yesterday with minimum fuss, we took a look back at some other, rather quirkier, land speed record attempts.
In 2006 the Honda F1 team wasn't doing too well, finishing with only one race win and in fourth place overall, they decided to take a year old BAR V10 F1 car to Bonneville to set a land speed record. The goal: complete a flying mile with an average speed of 400km/h.
With the standard, downforce inducing, rear-wing swapped out for a stabilising fin and a parachute, no other changes were deemed necessary between this car and the one used for the 2005 F1 season.
Alan van der Mewe piloted the car throughout the week, managing an average speed of 397.360kmh, just shy of the 400kmh mark but still enough to beat the F1 class record. He did hit the magical 400 on one pass but sadly wasn't able to match it on the return. Either way though, the 2005 Honda was the world's fastest F1 car.
I am sure this very car was available for relative peanuts some time after the team folded. It was much cheaper than its contemporaries because it needed a fair bit of money spending on it to get it back to race trim for use in any track events.
Gary2927 Oct 2017
But 'swapped out'? No.
loudlashadjuster27 Oct 2017
No other changes? Because I'm sure in race trim the thing was geared for 400+ km/h...
PorkFan27 Oct 2017
Surely the gearing is swapped about for every track? Not that I know this, just how I imagine it in my own mind. Surely they just picked out the longest combinations of gears and final drives out of the gearbox parts box? I realise for a normal car then changing gear ratios is definitely a “change” but for me I think it’s quite possible they had all the bits sat there already. I mean 400kmph is “only” about 250 mph.....and in my mind at least F1 cars must be geared for 200 ish for some tracks.....I admit I know next to nothing about Real F1 cars.....but the ones that exist in my imagination I think it’s possible