Event: VBB3 world land speed record attempt
Location: Bonneville salt flats, Utah, US
Date: 18, 19 September 2016
On Monday 19 September 2016, the all-electric four-wheel-drive VBB3, boasting nearly 3000hp, broke the land speed record for an electric vehicle. At Bonneville’s 11 mile course, the VBB3 averaged just over 341mph with veteran land speed record driver Roger Schroer at the wheel.
The VBB3 is the latest iteration of alternative-fuelled speed machines designed and built by students at the Ohio State University in partnership with Monaco-based maker of specialist electric vehicles, Venturi. A previous VBB car, the VBB2.5, had held the land speed record in this category: 307mph, set back in 2010. That vehicle was just a test-bed, however, for the VBB3. Difficult conditions for the past two years made it difficult to break that barrier (even though the VBB3 has a potential top speed in excess of 400mph) but this year the team’s fortunes changed.
Spacesuit Media was appointed the official photographic partner for the event. Artistic director Shiv Gohil and co-founder Ross Ringham travelled out to the salt flats to shoot the final day of preparation on Sunday 18 September and then the record attempts on Monday 19 September. As it turned out, the very first run of the day on Monday yielded the new record. We provided artistic, technical, tracking, documentary and team photography for the event, which has been used by Venturi for all press material following the new record.
We rolled the fixture into a 2,500 mile road trip, taking in California, Nevada, Utah and Arizona. As well as the salt flats, we hit the tourist trail in San Francisco to see the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz, found some amazingly scenic interstate routes in the desert, visited the Hoover Dam at night, had dinner in Vegas, popped along to the Grand Canyon, took in a stretch of the Pacific Coast Highway and then found the narrowest mountain pass from the coast back towards San Francisco. A fuller account of the trip can be found at current-e.com; more photos will follow here at spacesuitmedia.com; and you can reread our road trip social media updates using the hashtag #BulletSuit.
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