It was an interesting evening of racing, with high winds causing most of the riders in the first two heats to scratch. Those that ran included Trefor who sailed thru the traps at 74 mph with a 8 mph head/cross wind.
Note that Bluenoses’ paint job had evolved from earlier in the day, or even this morning. More costume changes than Lady Gaga.
and then it happened. One of the spooky bits of lore around this event is the fact that every once in a rare while, just as the sun touches the horizon, the winds die and the running conditions are perfect. When we heard from start that Sebastiaan had been launched, the winds were still a little above legal, but they started to decrease, and then he went screaming thru the traps, and we had to look at the printed time several times to believe it. At this point, we couldn’t announce anything until we had verified that the start conformed to the 15m rule, so despite pleading over the radio, it was all we could do to pack up timing before dark at the end of the heat.
After a quick conference at the Super 8, it was off to the Owl Club for the banquet. When it came time to announce the speeds of the final heat, the room went quiet. Polite applause for each and every time, and then at the end, when I said: Sebastiaan, 83.13 mph, the room erupted, and the Delft/Amsterdam people were besides themselves in jubilation. Three years of intense effort had finally paid off with a new world record.
They have posted this video where they saw their top speed just after the run according to instruments on the bike (we heard the cheering from timing), but they had to wait until the banquet for final verification that this was a valid record.
Mike Mowell got a well deserved spirit prize. He certainly had supported Florian’s ride, and had also provided much support to U of T, but he had also provided parts and tools for numerous teams from the gear he brought in Garrie Hill’s van. All this in addition to the statistics that he provides to the HPV community.
Now off to bed, and a quick flight back to the real world tomorrow.