Countdown to supersonic jet car trials with former Hartlepool man at the wheel

The Bloodhound car
The Bloodhound car

A supersonic car piloted by a fighter pilot who grew up in Hartlepool will make its debut test run next week.

The Bloodhound vehicle, powered by a jet engine, aims to set a new land speed record of 1,000mph.

Bloodhound Project driver Andy Green inside the cockpit of the Bloodhound supersonic car

Bloodhound Project driver Andy Green inside the cockpit of the Bloodhound supersonic car

It is set to make its first ‘slow’ run on Thursday when it is expected to reach 200mph in around nine seconds.

Inside the cockpit will be Wing Commander Andy Green, who grew up in Hartlepool in the 1970s and went to what is now High Tunstall College of Science.

The trials will be held at Cornwall Airport, in Newquay, marking the culmination of a month of tests to prove the car’s steering, brakes, suspension, data systems and other functions.

It will be Andy’s first time actually driving the car, which is powered by a EJ200 jet engine, taken from a Eurofighter Typhoon.

Andy, who holds the current land speed record of 763mph, said in his latest Bloodhound diary entry: “With this much power available, I have to confess to being both excited about the amazing performance on offer and a little nervous about controlling it.

“This car is going to be seriously fast and I’ve got to learn to drive it in a small handful of tests, before our first big (and public) runs on 26th and 28th October.

“It’s been a great few weeks getting Bloodhound ready to run.”

He will make two passes along the 1.7-mile runway. On Saturday, October 28 thousands of spectators are due to watch the car in action.

Project leaders say the tests are a huge step towards realising the car’s 1,000mph goal since its inception in 2008.

It also aims to inspire the next generation of engineers by visiting schools nationwide.

Richard Noble, Bloodhound project director, said: “The runway trials at Cornwall Airport, Newquay, will be the biggest milestone in the history of the project so far.

“They will provide important data on the performance of the car and give us a first opportunity to rehearse the procedures we’ll use when we go record breaking.”

The Bloodhound’s design is a mix of car and aircraft technology.

It will ultimately be powered by a jet engine and a rocket, which combined will produce over 135,000 horsepower.

That is more than six times the power of all the Formula 1 cars on a starting grid put together.