Pendine Sands in South Wales has long been synonymous with Land Speed Records ever since the days of Campbell and Thomas in the ’20’s. Following Parry Thomas’s ill fated 1927 attempt in his famous car ‘Babs’ (which crashed, killing Thomas), the beach was rarely used for record attempts until recently. Last year award winning actor Idris Elba set a new record there of 180.361mph in a Bentley, eclipsing the record held for nearly 90 years by ‘Bluebird’ of 174.8mph.
Steve Walton, salesman at Jack Lilley Romford, recently broke 2 Land Speed Records at Pendine Sands in the 1000cc and 1350cc categories. Here he tells us about the experience:
“When the chance to enter this years British Land Speed Records meeting came up it was too good an opportunity to miss, especially as ideally one day I would love to run a bike on the Bonneville Salt Flats. I entered my Suzuki GSXR1000 that I normally now use just for the occasional Sprint event, along with my every day commuter, my Suzuki GSX1300R Hayabusa. Riding on sand at speed is a very strange sensation and I began with a fairly sedate pass just to get the feel of the bike moving around on the sand, although this still netted me a speed in excess of 150 mph.
“Traction on the sand is minimal and trying to open the throttle even further when the speedo is reading 180mph and still then getting wheel spin gets the adrenalin well and truly flowing! The meeting ran smoothly and conditions were excellent and it seemed all too soon before we had to leave the sand as the tide was rapidly advancing back on to the ‘track’. I managed to just break the existing production 1000cc British Land Speed record and subsequently established new British Land Speed records in the 1.5 mile distance in both the 1000cc and 1350cc classes with top speed on the sands of 171.235 and 183.395mph respectively.
“Roll on next year……anyone fancy fitting a turbo to a Daytona for me????”
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