Thrust SSC - Media Zone

Thrustbrief 41 - 9th October 1997

Battle for Mach 1 On Land

The ThrustSSC team is currently facing problems with the Nevada weather. Having reached an estimated Mach 0.98 on October 7th, the team is now poised to attempt the first ever supersonic World Land Speed Record - which involves two supersonic passes over the measured mile and kilometre made within the FIA's land speed record rules. Weather has not permitted further runs since October 7th.

Unfortunately a low pressure weather system is working its way through the region and for the last two days neither Spirit of America nor ThrustSSC has been able to run due to winds in the 20-30 knot range which have developed substantial sandstorms - making even conventional travel on the playa almost impossible.

The immediate outlook is for snow at the 5,500ft level and further winds over the next two days. A substantial improvement is expected on Sunday with the arrival of a ridge of high pressure, which promises fine weather, light winds and higher temperatures.

The Thrust team have been pushing on with the development of the Black Rock track preparing the white gypsum lines and the fodding (hand clearing the tracks of debris). Today the team marked 25 track miles and fodded a further 27 track miles. A continual white lining effort is necessary as the previous days lines can be eroded by the sandstorms.

The team are now standing by - waiting for the first opportunity to run the car. Tomorrow (10th) the first early morning 2.5hr slot belongs to Spirit of America, with ThrustSSC having the desert from around 11am. If the weather permits, then the ThrustSSC team will go for the first ever supersonic World Land Speed Record.

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