Page last updated at 09:30 GMT, Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Lawn mower speed record launched


Organisers aim to propel the grass cutter at speeds over 100mph (160km/h)

Plans for a bid to break the world land speed record for a lawn mower are being unveiled in the New Forest.

Project Runningblade aims to propel the grass cutter at speeds over 100mph (160km/h) and will be launched at the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu.

Don Wales, the nephew of multiple world speed record holder Donald Campbell, will be at the controls of the attempt at Pendine Sands in Wales in February.

The current record of 80mph was set by American Bob Cleveland in 2006.

In the Project Runningblade attempt the machine would cover 147ft (45m) per second, covering the target mile in less than 36 seconds.

Stephen Vokins, head of the projects, said: "I'm amazed how far it's gone.

"It started as a daft idea that everyone laughed at. No-one's laughing now. Everyone is taking it very seriously.

"It's been very, very scientific. We've got all sorts of experts on board.

"We have aerodynamics experts, we have fuel additives experts, all sorts of people.

"It's just amazing how far you can take a lawn mower."

Mr Wales was the test driver for the British steam car, Inspiration, which recently broke the longest-standing world land speed record when it reached an average speed of 139.843mph (225.06km/h) in California, smashing the 1906 record.

The Project Runningblade team has worked with mower manufacturer Countax and is hoping to raise funds and awareness for Great Ormond Street Hospital and Wessex Heartbeat.

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