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This Super Weird-Looking Bike Might Break the Speed Record

It has to be pushed to start and caught when he stops to not fall over but this strange fish-shaped bike might be able to beat the speed record

smithsonian.com

Yes, that little blue thing is a bike.

Bicyclists always want to go faster. It’s part of their job. Graeme Obree, a scooting dashing cyclist with the nickname “The Flying Scotsman” is no exception. He broke the world hour record twice—riding 51.659 kilometers in an hour and then 51.84 kilometers later. And he did it all on a very strange looking bicycle that he had built himself using parts from a washing machine.

Now, the Flying Scotsman is at it again on an even weirder looking bike called The Beastie, Humans Invent reports. Here’s a video of the bike in action:

It has to be pushed to start and caught when he stops in order to keep upright. In the video, you can see his helpers having trouble launching him. Obree said that the new smoother shape of the bike was probably the issue:

“I wanted to go at a great speed right away but the guys couldn’t launch me. Back when I tested it at Machrihanish airport, I only needed one person to launch it so I assumed it wasn’t that hard to keep me upright and push me in a straight line but because it’s now all slippery and fish-shaped it’s hard for them.”

Eventually on the bike he reached about 50 mph, but stopped because he couldn’t see how much runway he had left. “When you are 2ft 6in off the ground you can’t see how much runway you’ve used so I never actually got to my max speed,” he said.

The idea is that this strange fish-shaped bike might be able to beat the speed record of 83 mph. He’ll try to break that record in September, at Battle Mountain in Nevada.

More from Smithsonian.com:

Will America ever love electric bikes?
Build a Better Bike Rack

About Rose Eveleth
Rose Eveleth

Rose Eveleth is a writer for Smart News and a producer/designer/ science writer/ animator based in Brooklyn. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Scientific American, Story Collider, TED-Ed and OnEarth.

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