Photos: Firing up the British Steam Car
British Steam Car
Meet the British Steam Car. It's out to set a land speed record. On Wednesday, it passed a milestone with a run of better than 80 mph on a test track in England.
Deploying the parachute
(A 1985 attempt by a separate group apparently got to 145 mph for a single run, but was not able to make the second run required for official consideration.)
According to the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile, the overall World Land Speed Record is 763 mph, set in 1997 by a twin turbofan jet-powered car called the ThrustSSC.
Don Wales jumps
Next month the British Steam Car will be shipped from England to the U.S. The goal is to make the record attempt in a dry lake bed at Edwards Air Force Base in California--depending on the weather. According a post on the group's Web site: "They have experienced a particularly wet winter and we could be waiting some time for the lakebed to dry."