Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

New Human-Powered World Hour Record 257

Posted by timothy
from the astounding-impressive-feats dept.
jesterpilot writes "Last weekend, the limit of human propulsion was pushed another kilometer. At the 2006 Dempsey-MacCready One Hour Record Attempts on the Nissan track in Arizona, Fred Markham set a new World Hour Record by cranking 85,4 km in a fully faired recumbent bicycle. This is about 1 km more than Sam Whittinghams 2004 record. Noting Fred's age of fifty years, it seems the boundaries of human propulsion are not even close yet. Read a report of the decisive runs on Rob English' diary."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

New Human-Powered World Hour Record

Comments Filter:
  • by stjobe (78285) on Monday July 03, 2006 @04:44PM (#15652312) Homepage
    New World Hour Record - Now With 61 minutes!
  • Fear! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Nethead (1563) <joe@nethead.com> on Monday July 03, 2006 @04:45PM (#15652321) Homepage Journal
    Being a computer bound, lazy geek, this scares the crap out of me!
  • Way cool (Score:5, Interesting)

    by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Monday July 03, 2006 @04:47PM (#15652332) Homepage Journal

    I know fast freddy, or at least I've met the guy. I met him at Calfee in Santa Cruz, Calfee makes "the best" carbon fiber diamond-frames. He was getting ready to move over to Easy Racers, whose bikes have set numerous human-powered land speed records. They even sell one of those designs, the Gold Rush, to consumers. It's way sexy for a bicycle. Another friend of mine works for them, designing and prototyping bicycles, and doing side work on electric bicycles. Very cool stuff.

    • Re:Way cool (Score:3, Interesting)

      Freddy was associated with Easy Racers for years. He did some work with Calfee but ended that relationship a couple years ago. He has since returned to Easy Racers as one of the owners, having purchased the company, with a partner, after Gardner Martin passed.

      His success in setting this record is a real triumph, and gives me, as another relative codger, hope.
      • Re:Way cool (Score:3, Interesting)

        by drinkypoo (153816)

        Freddy was associated with Easy Racers for years. He did some work with Calfee but ended that relationship a couple years ago. He has since returned to Easy Racers as one of the owners, having purchased the company, with a partner, after Gardner Martin passed.

        Yeah, I wasn't familiar with the extent to which he was involved with calfee. I think it was more than a couple years ago that I saw him there, when he was then supposedly breaking up with 'em. I know he's been involved with easy racers for the lon

    • Re:Way cool (Score:4, Interesting)

      by g00bd0g (255836) on Monday July 03, 2006 @10:54PM (#15654269) Homepage
      I am the "friend" that works for Easy Racers. Wassup Drinkypoo! We just got back a couple hours ago and I see this is already posted on Slashdot, cool! I have already put up a couple photos. I will add some more photos/videos and stories over the next couple days, after I sleep for about 20 hours.

      http://www.easyracers.com/vbb/showthread.php?s=&th readid=2669 [easyracers.com]

      Check our website and forums over the next couple days for more info!

      Gabriel DeVault
      Easy Racers, Inc.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 03, 2006 @04:53PM (#15652359)
    As I point out to my wife, unless you live more than 12 miles from work or are in tremendously horrible shape... cycling smokes all other forms of transpo...

    12 miles seems to be the magic traffic versus bike # from my casual watching...

    but when they finally get the aero recombant marketable... maybe that will change to 20.

    Cars are wierd... not usre why people use them so much...they make you fat...
    • by Espectr0 (577637) on Monday July 03, 2006 @07:57PM (#15653478) Journal
      Cars are wierd... not usre why people use them so much...they make you fat...

      Because:

      *You sweat (not good for dating/going to work)
      *No place to store your groceries (or for the slashdot crowd, taking your rig to a lan party)
      *No place for the girlfriend to sit
      *No air conditioning
      *Sun
      *Rain

      Need i say more?
      • Re: Groceries (Score:4, Interesting)

        by TheStonepedo (885845) on Monday July 03, 2006 @09:00PM (#15653789) Homepage Journal
        Sweat:
        You will sweat if you leave for work with a ride that takes at least 40 minutes and give yourself 40 minutes to arrive at your destination. If you time your ride such that you don't have to hammer up hills and race between traffic lights and stop signs you can ride in most weather without sweating.
        Trunk Space:
        Most road bicycles (there's no good reason to ride mountain bike sized wheels and knobby tires on pavement) can be equipped with rear and front racks. With a pannier on each side of the rack, you can add more weight than you'd be willing to carry walking. Add a backpack and you're a big rig. If you don't want to put your 30 inch CRT on the rear rack, you could always pick up a gaming laptop with the money you've saved over a year or two in fuel and car maintenance.
        Girlfriend:
        Are you sure you're a geek? Diamonds are a girl's best friend, but second best is buying your woman a nice bicycle she can ride next to you. If you're the old-fashioned, dominant type you can get a tandem bicycle and make her ride behind you, serving merely as a means to get more power. If she's the new-fashioned, dominant type you can get a tandem bicycle and let her steer while forcing you to ride stoker.
        A/C and Sun:
        If you're going to work in the morning, the angle of the Sun in the sky is probably low enough that a little sunscreen will keep you from burning. If you ride outdoors frequently you'll become better accustomed to the heat and humidity and not find the lack of air conditioning to be so awful.
        Rain:
        It is not easy to bicycle with an umbrella, however the same full-body rainsuits that can be rolled into tiny little bags for backpacking work when cycling. If you can keep your work clothes at work, who is going to care if you arrive a little wet with time to dry and dress?
      • Need i say more?


        Yes, please. What is this "dating" and "girlfriend" of which you speak?

      • I think these are mostly misconceptions, arising from what I would guess to be mainly cultural reasons. I live in Japan, and lots of people here ride bikes with none of the above concerns. One problem (from a north american perspective) might be that these bikes aren't remotely "sexy." They're mostly single-speed steel frame beasts with baskets, fender racks and little friction-powered headlights. Here are your concerns addressed:


        *You sweat (not good for dating/going to work)
        You can change when you
    • I think a big part of it is social stigma. I had considered biking to work before, but didn't really take the plunge until after a move when my new cycling enthusiast neighbor suggested it. My commute is about six miles and five or ten minutes slower than by car; I'm lucky to live close and have a low traffic route to work. I'm also lucky to have a shower and a locker at work, and the weather here is fairly nice year round (summers are a cool 70 in the morning even if 85-95 by midday; winters don't often

      • Jeans are simply less comfortable.

        They are much stiffer than cycling clothing. They have no padding. They do have heavy seems that chafe. They are hot and don't dry well.

        If you are riding 8-20 miles, these things matter. If you are only doing 2-3 miles at a liesurely pace, it doesn't. In my college days, I always wore jeans except when I wore non-cycling shorts. It was fine and saved the hassle and expense of dedicated clothing.

        Working professionals, though, have the money to pay for dedicated clothin
  • by rmadmin (532701) <rmalek@NoSPAM.homecode.org> on Monday July 03, 2006 @04:56PM (#15652378) Homepage
    For those of us that are used to the english system: 85.4 kph = 53.0650998 mph

    I don't think I average that on my drive to work.
  • "Fred Markham set a new World Hour Record by cranking 85,4 km in a fully faired recumbent bicycle."

    My amazing math and reasoning skills lead me to believe that he therefore had an average speed of 85.4 km/h (~53 mph for those using the imperial system). Rather impressive for a human powered vehicle (and for a one hour time interval).
    • Re:Weird Phrasing (Score:3, Interesting)

      by usrusr (654450)
      it's the usual phrasing for that certain kind of bicycle speed record.

      i wonder if this one is standing start or flying start.
      • i wonder if this one is standing start or flying start.

        "The world's fastest bicycles, known as "Speedbikes" will converge at the Nissan Technical Center North America outside Casa Grande, Arizona June 30 and July 1-2, 2006 to compete for the $25,000 Dempsey-MacCready Prize, for the first Speedbike to travel 56 miles (90 K) in one hour from a standing start." from http://www.recumbents.com/wisil/racing2006/dempsey 2006.htm [recumbents.com] :)

        • Just FYI, km is written with a lowercase k and a lowercase m. 'K' is a unit of temperature.
          • If I could kindly direct your attention to the quotations marks and the reference at the end of the quotation, you'll find that I am not the author of that mistake.

            P.S. I grew up using the metric system, and through formal education am well versed in the SI system, so I hardly need lecturing on the matter. :)
    • What's weird about it? It's the distance the rider can cover in one hour.
    • Am I the only one bothered that European numeral notation is used to describe a race that took place in the US on a website based in the US? If I was reading Aftenposten, I would expect such notation. Here on slashdot I expect the editors to actual format numbers in the US system. I know that the editor do not actually edit, but still...
    • Rather impressive for a human powered vehicle (and for a one hour time interval).


      Impressive, true, but I'd be even more impressed by a human-powered aircraft competition. What's the one-hour distance record for that?

  • Just for comparison (Score:5, Interesting)

    by chanrobi (944359) on Monday July 03, 2006 @05:00PM (#15652403)
    World class elite athletes are doing about 31mph ~ 50kph (1 hour, outdoors) in individual time trials on upright bikes (non faired TT/Tri bikes). It's pretty much entirely the aerodynamic efficiency of the low/faired enclosure that is giving the recumbents such a huge speed difference over an hour in these record attempts.

    The guys powering these things aren't couch potatoes either.

  • 85,4 km?
    • Re:What? (Score:2, Informative)

      World Hour Record. That's how far he went in one hour. Divide the distance by the time and you get the rate (85.4km/h).

      And if that's not the answer to your question, could you provide more information next time?
    • Re:What? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Emetophobe (878584) on Monday July 03, 2006 @06:07PM (#15652767)
      Some countries use a comma instead of a period to represent a decimal point. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Decimal_point [wikipedia.org]

      Dot countries

      Countries where a dot is used to mark the radix point include:

              Australia, Botswana, Canada (English-speaking), China, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong of the People's Republic of China, India, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Korea (both North and South), Malaysia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Nigeria, New Zealand, Pakistan, Panama, Philippines, Perú, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom, United States (including insular area of Puerto Rico)

      Comma countries

      Countries where a comma is used to mark the radix point include:

              Albania, Andorra, Argentina, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cameroon, Canada (French-speaking), Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Chile, Colombia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Estonia, Faroes, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Hungary, Indonesia, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg (uses both separators officially), Macedonia, Moldova, Netherlands, Norway, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay, Venezuela, Zimbabwe
  • by zogger (617870)
    ...I got pulled over for *speeding* in a 45 (IIRC, zogheimerz now) zone on my ten speed, an old varsity I had worked on. Radar gun had me at 70(that I remember), downhill of course. The cop and me were both laffin like crazy, he's like "boy, you know how fast you wuz goin?" I'm like "nope, but it sure was fun passin them cars!". No ticket, I got a "warning"...

    Glad to see a boomer break another record! yaaaa US!1!!1leben
    • Sorry, what does "zogheimerz" mean? Babelfish isn't too helpful on the translation, it comes up as "pulling home ore" when translating German->English.
    • Now unless your numbers were in Kilometer/hour, I'm doubting you. Why? cause the fastest I've gone on a steep paved hilly road around a ski resort was 51.5 MPH on my bikes computer. My friend hit 53.5 on some mountain road where they give out stickers that say your car was able to make it up the mountain.

      Anything over 50MPH on a road bike is scary, besides not being able to pedal any faster after 45.

      Anyone else with any reasonable bike numbers out there for confirmation?

      • 70MPH (Score:2, Interesting)

        by zogger (617870)
        I was passing cars *fast*, riding down the center line betwen the two lanes. t-totally completely bonkers nuts. Was going to work, it was around 7 long twisty miles downhill to work (you know, more or less descending), then in the afternoon an terrible 7 mile climb back home when I was already tired from working in an orchard all day. I was laid down over the bars, tucked in for that run, I did it every day but usually I braked some and stayed in my lane, that day I just went for it,you know how you just ge

      • "...Anyone else with any reasonable bike numbers out there for confirmation?..."

        Waalll, If you mosey on over to Analytic Cycling [analyticcycling.com], there's a number of calculators you can use to estimate speed & power given a few parameters.

        I used the "speed given power" calculator taking the default values for most of the parameters, which all looked sensible enough. I set the input power to zero, as I doubt that the rider had the gearing to do anything worthwhile at the pedals and messed around with the slope un
  • by B5_geek (638928) on Monday July 03, 2006 @05:30PM (#15652538)
    I am a bent (short for recumbent) rider. I ride a longbikes Slipstream. (IMHO the most comfortable long-distance touring bikes on the planet) I would like to clear up some possible misunderstandings that might exist.

    Not all Bents are fast, just as all uprights are not fast. The speed you can get on a bent is largely dependant on your engine.
    After riding 100+km (62+miles) on a bent nothing hurts. Compare that to an upright.
    If you suffer from wrist, neck, bum, or genital pain after spending ANY amount of time on an upright, I strongly suggest you investigate recumbents.
    I strongly recommend browsing http://bentrideronline.com/ [bentrideronline.com] It is a goldmine of information.

    Bring the joy back to cycling, get bent.
    • by Quirk (36086) on Monday July 03, 2006 @05:53PM (#15652694) Homepage Journal
      I live in Vancouver, B.C. I looked at recumbents, but found them to be a little pricy for something I wasn't fully committed to. My last tour on a mountain bike took me over 6000 km over plus 4 months. I crossed the rockies, went down south through the Cypress hills and across Canada to Montreal. Once I'd crossed the Rockies I really didn't experience any fatigue until Montreal. I found that once my body fat had dropped to next to nil fatigue began to take a toll at the end of the day. I could pinch my skin at my waist and it was fatless like rubbing two pieces of paper together.

      Also as you spoke to various physical pains I experienced little or no pain, there was rather almost a daily endorphine high.

      I'm presently rebuilding my mountain bike. I'd rather build the drive chain myself from quality parts then buy a bike new.

      There are very few recumbent bikes on the west coast but I hope their numbers grow as I'd like to buy one.

      cheers

      • I live in Vancouver, B.C. I looked at recumbents, but found them to be a little pricy for something I wasn't fully committed to. My last tour on a mountain bike took me over 6000 km over plus 4 months.
        Given these two sentences, I'd just like to know what your definition of "fully committed" is. Do you have to tow a trailer, or do you have to eat, sleep, and work from the saddle?
        • Given these two sentences, I'd just like to know what your definition of "fully committed" is.

          Sorry for the ambiguity. I meant that the price was high relative to my commitment to owning a recumbent bike. I'm thinking or touring Canada again next year and I've given some thought to a trailer.

          My understanding from idle chatter is that recumbent bikes outperform standard bikes except when challenging hills. As a tour of Canada starting out from Vancouver means crossing the Rockies I can't see touring on a re

          • I was mostly making a joke about how 6000km constitutes a pretty big commitment to me, and probably to most people.

            Although strictly speaking you could avoid the Rockies by heading North through the Peace River region... I have heard conflicting reports about recumbents and hills: some have told me that climbing is hard, and some have told me that climbing is easier since you can push the pedal with more force than just your body weight by pushing back against the seat and through main force of your quads

      • You can ride what you want of course--but there's a couple of points I'd make:
        Firstly--recumbents don't cost that much now. Yes there are some $3K and $4K+ ones, but there are upright bikes that cost that much too and everyone who rides doesn't own one. The cheaper 'bents start at around $500-$600. At that price point a bent is not particularly fast or good for long-distance touring, but it will still be way more comfortable to ride than any upright, at any price. If you can cough up $1200-$1500, there's
        • What, are you from the recumbent publicity council? ;)

          I'd buy a bent if I lived somwhere flat. As is, I like to climb, and I like to climb fast, that means upgright for me. Also, the though of being that low in city traffic seems pretty scary, but perhaps one gets used to it?

          Since you seem to be in tune with the recumbant advocacy movment, do you know of any recumbant recruiting days - activities where you can show up and try one out, get the indoctrination, try the kookaid, first one's free, join the

        • Upright defenders tend to forget that people who spend money on recumbents nearly-always used to spend money on nice upright bikes; we know what it feels like to ride uprights.

          No, you know what YOU feel like to ride an upright. You don't know what it feels like for ME to ride an upright. I don't get neck pain. I don't get hand pain or numbness. And my butt doesn't hurt (at least after the second ride of the season). And yes, I've spent a lot of time on a bike (my longest day is 130 miles, so I'm not tal
      • I'm presently rebuilding my mountain bike. I'd rather build the drive chain myself from quality parts then buy a bike new.
        Maybe you should build a robot to assemble the bike for you?
      • First off, take a look at this set of pages on my site [phoenixgarage.org]...

        I started this project (heh, have yet to finish it, but that is a whole 'nother story) to build an electric vehicle using bicycle parts, and decided to build the machine using a recumbent design. A couple of steel garage sale bikes, a bit of welding, and I had my frame. The seat was a fishing boat seat picked up from Walmart. Since I am planning on attaching an electric motor, there isn't any pedals or chain, but one could easily see how such a system

    • From what I read in July's issue of Bicycling Magazine, recumbents are faster than an equivalent road bike as long as you're going downhill or level. Apparently, they blow on hills. Since the glaciers came through our area some bazillion years ago and left it really hilly, I guess I'll just have to stick with my Bianchi road bike.
  • OT: Words (Score:5, Informative)

    by belg4mit (152620) on Monday July 03, 2006 @05:53PM (#15652692) Homepage
    The pieces are fairings.
    The adjective fair means unincumbered.
    The verb fair, from ship building, is to make smooth and flowing. ...in a fully fairinged recumbent bicycle. (verbing) ...in a fully fair recumbent bicycle. ...in a fully faired recumbent bicycle. (original)
  • by posterlogo (943853) on Monday July 03, 2006 @06:28PM (#15652909)
    The recent record was set at a track (in Arizona) that was different from the previous record holder's ride (in Germany). In fact, aren't there bound to be many differences? Like time of day, weather, and especially wind speed and direction? Is a different of ~1-1.5% within a margin of error or a bona-fide new record? Sure it is technically a longer distance, but it seems like it would be impossible to fully normalize against the different conditions. I guess one would have to atleast do it one the same track, with approximately equivalent weather conditions. Considering that these speed bikes are so precision tuned to add seconds here and there to a time trial, such margins of error should be at least be acknowledged.
    • The recent record was set at a track (in Arizona) that was different from the previous record holder's ride (in Germany). In fact, aren't there bound to be many differences?

      Easiest way to find out. Compare the average speeds of Formula1 racing from various tracks. I say Formula1 instead of NASCAR as Formula1 has tracks all over the world instead of just in the US.

      However, more to the point, you are right in that there are many conditions that can make the difference. Aside from the weather and the p
    • Seems like altitude would make a huge difference, and Casa Grande, at 1400 feet above sea level, is probably higher than some other tracks they use. Also, higher humidity makes the air denser, and Arizona is very dry.
      • Many of the world records in cycling were set at the Olympics in 1968 since it was held in Mexico City at 10,000 feet. Many of the more recent speed records have been set in the San Luis valley of Colorado, which has long, straight roads and 300 days of sunlight, at 7500' elevation. Air resistance is, at the speeds these people are riding, 99.99% of the effort, so it makes a simply enormous difference.
    • With fastest / longest / etc. records, I think you have to assume perfect conditions. If you can find a better track with more ideal conditions, then that's part of getting to set a new record.

      The point isn't to pit one racer against the other in a perfectly "fair" way, it's to asymptotically approach the limits of human capability, so adding a couple miles to the record is significant.
    • Every top team in the world was invited to this event. The amount of time/effort to actually get to a track, anywhere in the world, is pretty trivial compared to the amount of time/effort spent designing and building one of these bikes in the first place. So if you build the best bike you can, you should take it to the fastest track you can. What's not fair about that?

      If you read the hpva rules you'll see there are very specific rules regarding wind and weather. There will always be a track that is fastest.
  • I beat that record in 1990.

    I've rode a plain, heavy, 18 speed steel mongoose hilltopper mountain bicycle up to 55 miles per hour on a freeway. I was going downhill north of houston, and I was skimming the updraft from huge convoys of 18 wheelers. It was SCARY, but I was definitely going 55.

    The updraft was enough to rock my bike and pull it to the left (since I was on the hwy shoulder).

    My last landlord "appropriated" the very same bike against my will. If I'd known I held the world record of human powered

    • "... I was going downhill north of houston, and I was skimming the updraft from huge convoys of 18 wheelers...."

      If you're getting dragged along by a bunch of 18 wheelers, then you're really only in the running for an assisted human-powered land speed record. Currently held by John Howard [canosoarus.com] at around 152mph.

      • This just in... (Score:3, Informative)

        by dtmos (447842)
        The present-day record for car pacing is held by Fred Rompelberg [guinnesworldrecords.com] of Holland, who reached 268.831 km/h (167.043 mph) on a bicycle [fredrompelberg.com] following a car [cyclingforums.com] at the Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah, on October 3, 1995.

        Interestingly, he set the record 27 days shy of his 50th birthday, so there does seem to be a trend here....

One picture is worth 128K words.

Working...