Bike Racer Hits 100 m.p.h. To Set New World’s Record (Jun, 1935)

Bike Racer Hits 100 m.p.h. To Set New World’s Record

ANEW world’s record was established in Los Angeles recently when Frank Bartell, veteran six-day bike racer, pedaling behind a streamlined windshield fastened to the rear of a fast-traveling car, skimmed over a one-mile course at an average speed of 80.5 m. p. h. Beating the previous record by more than four miles, 33-year-old Bartell was confident that he soon would surpass his present time.

The mile straightaway course was laid out on a concrete boulevard. Both auto and cylist passed over the finish line at 90 m. p. h. and were said to be doing 100 m.p. h. before they slowed down.

11 comments
  1. Rick Auricchio says: January 15, 20085:32 pm

    I wonder how he was able to ride blind like that, especially at that speed?

  2. nlpnt says: January 15, 20087:32 pm

    He’d just have to trust the driver of the car.

  3. Firebrand38 says: January 15, 20087:35 pm

    What do you mean? He just lined up with the wind screen. The driver was the only one that had to watch where he was going.

    On another note, it seems that the record setting bike wound up in a shop in Washington State http://seattlepi.nwsour…

  4. Firebrand38 says: January 15, 20087:38 pm

    I meant to include the shop’s website http://www.classiccycle…

  5. Randy says: January 15, 20089:38 pm

    I cannot imagine doing 100 mph in cycling shorts and a leather hairnet!

    The current record stands at 166.9 mph: http://www.teammccallus…

  6. Repack Rider says: January 19, 20085:42 pm

    I knew the guy who set the record at 145 mph, John Howard, former US cycling champion.

    His pace car was specially built so one person steered and one controlled the throttle. The throttle man faced backwards toward the rider, and adjusted the speed to keep him at the proper distance. The gear the rider used was so high that they had to tow him to 60 mph before he could turn the cranks fast enough to have effect.

  7. Gregarious Johnstonian says: January 30, 200812:38 am

    My friend Philbert Trensalvanian, a fellow Czech, just biked 85.4385 mph behind a turbocharged inline six four wheel drive cargo van.

  8. Tomithia Jonzechknia says: January 30, 20087:59 am

    I am a fellow Checker. What you may not realize is our secret concerning the windscreen. Inside of the rear of the motorcar is a very large shaft driven vacuum cleaner that sucks the biker close to the car,..all the biker need do is give the appearance of hard pedaling and apply the brakes accordingly to keep from getting sucked up.

  9. Gregarious Johnstonian says: January 30, 20088:36 am

    I forgot my fellow Cszcheck Pilbert, was indeed behind a shaft driven, fuel injected, turbocharged, 300ci inline six, four wheel drive cargo van with locking hubs, three shifters, three fuel pumps, and German WWII headlight shades to prevent detection.

    Due the the extreme humility of Mr. Philbert, the record was set without observation lest it be discovered and his head swell with pride.

  10. Philbert Trensalvanian says: January 30, 200811:24 am

    Screw thee Tomithia…You are just envious because your turbocharged minivan blew the hell up

  11. Peter Bartell says: February 11, 20105:53 pm

    Frank was my Grandfather-The topic of this event came up now and then, when we were younger.

    yes, he literally rode along behind the car– taking advantage of it’s draft.

    He told us that at times, he was telling them to go faster.

    It’s hard to tell in the photo, but the front sprocket was about 18″ in diameter.

    He told us that for the days afterward, the reality of what he had done set in & that he was an emotional wreck– trembling & such. I think that’s why he never tried it again. :)

    Yes, the shop in Washington has one of his bikes, but it isn’t the actual bike that is pictured above– the bike in Washington was one of the few bikes he kept– I’m pretty sure that one is the same he rode every day, until he was about 85.

    Yes, he was 100% Czech by birth, but he was born in The States :)

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