Record-breaking Rainworth pupils inspire international rocket race

Students from The Joseph Whitaker School in Rainworth will attemp to break the world speed record for a rocket-powered model car at the weekend.

Students from The Joseph Whitaker School in Rainworth will attemp to break the world speed record for a rocket-powered model car at the weekend.

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Pioneering pupils from Rainworth could inspire others to follow in their tyre tracks after helping to launch a nationwide project.

Record-breaking youngsters from Joseph Whitaker School were at the launch of the Model Rocket Car Challenge in Bedford recently, to inspire budding engineers to build themselves a pocket-sized speed machine.

The young engineers at the Warsop Lane school hit the headlines last year after they designed and built a tiny rocket car that smashed the land speed record.

They got one of their cars beyond 556mph, and demonstrated its raw power at the Santa Pod Raceway in Bedford in front of crowds of enthusiastic young onlookers.

Now the Bloodhound Education programme hope the pupils’ extraordinary feat will entice others to have a go.

Joel Evans from Bloodhound, said: “It’s getting massive and the pupils from Joseph Whitaker have helped inspire this challenge.

“We even got international interest from South Africa who will be trying to beat the record that has been set.

“They did a demonstration of one of their cars and the most reaction from the crowds was ‘wow’.

“These young people were really inspired by the launch.”

The young Rainworth engineers smashed the previous landspeed record of 287mph that was set in 2011.

They had three vehicles which are each around 45cm in length, made from carbon fibre with titanium wheels and were carefully assembled using strong glue.

Named Redshift, Bloodhound and Insanity, the Joseph Whitaker pupils took them to the Rolls Royce testing track in Hucknall in October.

Redshift shattered the previous best by clocking a Tarmac-melting 478.1mph.

But this was superseded by Insanity, which reached 509.83mph.

That was followed by a staggering second run of 556.28mph, giving an average speed of 533.1mph.