Nottingham

Joseph Whitaker School rocket car breaks world speed record

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Media captionThe car averaged 533.1mph (857.9km/h)

A team of schoolchildren's rocket-powered model car has broken the world speed record, it is claimed.

Pupils at The Joseph Whitaker School in Rainworth, Nottinghamshire, broke the record at their first attempt with a speed of 478.1mph (769.4km/h).

However, later, a different car they had built went even faster and hit an average speed of 533.1mph (857.9km/h).

The footage from the Rolls-Royce runway in Hucknall will now be sent to Guinness for verification.

If the speed is verified, it will have smashed the existing record held by Samvir Thandi and the Heathland School in Middlesex, whose car reached 287.6mph (462.84 km/h) in March.

Image copyright Joseph Whitaker School
Image caption Joseph Whitaker School's young engineers after their car broke the record

The Young Engineers tweeted: "We have a confirmed 478.1mph average by Red Shift! Well done to all the young engineers - world record holders!!"

However, after a further attempt with a car they had nicknamed Insanity, the team went on to set an even bigger record.

Phil Worsley, the teacher in charge of the Young Engineers club, said: "When people watch our rockets they don't anticipate the speed, their heads lag behind the car.

"[The pupils] are absolutely amazing. The most amazing bunch of people I've ever worked with."

Image copyright Twitter
Image caption Tweet by the Young Engineers club after setting a further world record

The cars, which are about 45cm (17in) long and constructed from carbon fibre, run on titanium wheels and are guided by a 250m (820ft) steel cable.

All parts have been stuck together with strong glue and at the end of each run, the cars come to a stop using small parachutes.

The pupils have been working on the project for about a year.

Image copyright Joseph Whitaker School
Image caption The rocket-powered cars made by the Young Engineers club have gone through a number of prototypes

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