Saturday, February 23, 2002

Unsung Heroes

I've started reading Hot Rod Magazine again after a long spell away - I first read it as a schoolboy back in the sixties, even appeared in it once at the Street Rod Nationals in Memphis in 1971. I noticed a passing reference to Don and Rick Vesco having raised the absolute World Land Speed Record for Wheel-Driven automobiles to 458 mph in November 2001. This breaking the previous record set by England’s Donald Campbell in 1964 by more than 55 miles per hour.
As an avid car nut this was news to me - it goes to show that unless you have slick PR the media can ignore the greatest of achievements.
Britain's own Andy Green, an RAF fighter pilot, returned from the USA after breaking the sound barrier on land to little acclaim - there was no one to meet him at London's Heathrow airport. In autumn 1997, Green, driving for Richard Noble in the jet-powered Thrust SSC broke the sound barrier at Mach 1.002 setting a new two-way average record run of 763.035 mph.

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