The Steam Car attempts were a real challenge. The team consisted of an eclectic mix of people who all pulled together in extraordinary circumstances to eventually win through in extremely harsh conditions. Don had been invited to be the Test driver by Charles Burnett iii, who generously offered Don the chance to beat Charles's own record!
The team spent 8 weeks in America battling severe heat. They experienced a heat wave in the Mojave Desert! The car, very much a prototype, had a mind of its own and refused to work to order. However, the Team were determined not be beaten and with true Brit Grit saw the record beaten. The BBC captured this struggle with their documentary ‘The Fastest steam Car In The World’ and Don’s talk is an excellent example of a team pulling together to achieve the seemingly impossible!
Don’s Records at Pendine saw a number of interruptions because of finding numerous shells (not all were of the marine type). An unexploded bomb had to be dug out of the middle of the course.
Don is now planning the next Bluebird Electric car to attempt the Worlds record in Autumn 2015 to coincide with the 80th anniversary of Sir Malcolm Campbell's 301mph record set on Bonneville.
The Bluebird boat K7 is currently being restored in Newcastle to be placed on permanent display in Coniston.