This particular attempt began in 2015 and has battled malfunctions and illnesses. Following the recent successful test session at the Bonneville Salt Flats with the Triumph Infor Rocket Streamliner, becoming the world’s fastest ever Triumph with a speed of 274.2 mph, Triumph Motorcycles can confirm the motorcycle land speed record attempt will take place mid-September.
For those who wonder why this record means so much to the British motorcycle manufacturer, its part of the company’s history. The iconic Bonneville name was conceived following Johnny Allen’s land-speed record runs at the Salt Flats in September 1956, when he reached the record-breaking speed of 193.72 mph.
The first T120 Bonneville model was unveiled at the Earls Court Bike Show and went on sale in 1959.
Piloted by TT star Guy Martin, the Triumph Infor Rocket Streamliner will return to the famous Bonneville Salt Flats and attempt to beat the current 376.8 mph record speed on an 11 mile-long course. Despite having a good course surface for testing, the team felt that the salt wasn’t yet fully capable of supporting a top-speed streamliner run. In consultation with FIM course manager Mike Cook, the team are targeting the September dates as the best possible opportunity for the optimal course conditions required for the record attempt.
The practice week, which ended with the 274.2mph run on Tuesday 9th August, demonstrated that both the Triumph Infor Rocket Streamliner and rider Guy Martin are ready for the task ahead. Martin’s first week in the streamliner saw him master the controls of the 1,000 bhp streamliner very quickly - achieving all of the goals set by Crew Chief and Triumph Infor Rocket Streamliner designer Matt Markstaller and his team.
“We achieved a great deal during our test week at Bonneville and feel we are in a great position to move ahead with our record attempt,” Markstaller noted when asked about returning in September, “Guy settled into the streamliner very quickly and impressed us with the speed in which he mastered both the motorcycle and riding on the salt.“
The Triumph 2016 record attempt is supported by title partner global cloud applications provider Infor, with further support from iconic clothing brand Belstaff.
The Triumph Infor Rocket features a carbon Kevlar monocoque construction with two turbocharged Triumph Rocket III engines producing a combined 1,000 bhp at 9,000 rpm. The motorcycle is 25.5 feet long, 2 feet wide and 3 feet tall. Powered by methanol fuel, the bike is competing in the Division C (streamlined motorcycle) category.
Triumph has a history of breaking the land speed record, holding the title of ‘World's Fastest Motorcycle’ between 1955 to 1970. The record-breaking Triumph Streamliners included: Devil's Arrow, Texas Cee-gar, Dudek Streamliner and Gyronaut X1, the former achieving a top speed of 245.667 mph (395.28 km/h). Today's record, held by Rocky Robinson since 2010 riding the Top Oil-Ack Attack streamliner, sits at 376.363 mph (605.697 km/h).
To continue this success, patience may be the needed virtue.
“While conditions were some of the best I have seen over the last few years, we feel there is still some room for improvement,” Markstaller said, “When chasing a record such as this on two wheels the conditions have to be the very best they can be, to give us the greatest chance of achieving the speeds we require to set a new record. We feel that waiting a few further weeks will provide us with even better conditions and put us in the ideal position to make our record attempt.”
Readers interested in the world record attempt can follow the effort on Clutch and Chrome or online at Triumph’s website.