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On 19th September 2007 Equipe Vitesse will attempt to break the world 24 hour distance record for a motor powered kart.

Equipe Vitesse have plenty of experience of endurance karting having won the prestigious Le Mans 24 hour event 5 times. This year they added the Autosport International 24 hour title to their list of successes.


Russell Crowe.
Joe Flay.
Simon Rudd.
Tom Huxtable

The world record attempt kart

From left to right Joe Flay, Simon Rudd and Russell Crowe
The current world record
Currently 1,709.9 km
Maximum engine size 160cc
Maximum 4 drivers, driving 1 hour (max) stints
Recognised Kart circuit (not an oval)

The record attempt is the brainchild of russell Crowe and the team will attempt to shatter the world record by a considerable margin and earn the already famous team a place in the Guinness book of world records. Watch this space.


Teesside Karting’s spectacular track near Middlesbrough, “The world’s longest, fastest kart racing circuit”.


Tony Kart 2006 EVS to ICC spec racing chassis with front and rear braking system. Powerplant a two stroke Honda CR 125cc motorcross bike engine rebored to 140cc producing an estimated 43 BHP. Five speed gearbox

Organiser: Russell Crowe
Phone: 07989 981 149 email: info@kartingworldrecord.com


Thank you to the people who took the time to come and see us at our first test your enthusiasm was appreciated.

Firstly the kart looks very purposeful and the standard of preparation by Russell is simply fantastic with all the fabricated parts and detailing. Very professional, it looked like it had just come out of a showroom.

This would be the first time the kart would run in anger as the first time it was driven had been by Russell on his drive in West Malling.

The kart was started up and I think it is fair to say that anyone in earshot turned around as the engine note is fantastic.

Each driver took his turn in the kart leaving the pit lane with black tyre marks left all over the tarmac.

There was a lot of puddles of water on the track at all the crucial apexes. However for the first few laps you had so much to concentrate on IE. gear changing and getting used to the stopping power of the front and rear brakes that you did not have time to put the kart on the optimum racing line. This did not seem to matter as the kart has so much grunt.

The acceleration of the kart is phenomenal and is definitely the quickest kart I have ever driven. Saying that we did not have the right gearing on the kart and we were only able to use 3 of the five gears available. It took a few laps to get used to the hand clutch and the gears but it all seemed to come together after a little practice.

The kart is very very quick and although we were not really going for a lap time as this test was to learn about the characteristic's of the kart and to iron out any small problems that are bound to come to light. I think it is fair to say that you cannot help yourself trying to obliterate anything else that is circulating on the track.

We ran the kart for the test with a standard engine ( the record attempt engines will have approx. another 4 to 5 HP. We tried the kart shod with Vega rubber which were well worn before we started (we have still to decide on the tyres for the attempt) however our quickest lap was in the high 37 second bracket and showed real promise.

The major issue for me being the largest driver is the seat position and the close proximity of the engine to my elbow ( I already have the bruise and swelling to show for it) However this is is in hand and is probably sorted out by now knowing Russells efficiency. Body armour has been ordered from Ebay and everything will be on hand and prepared for the next test.

TESTING UPDATE Thurday 13th September 2007

We arrived at Teesside and prepared to unpack the kit ready for the first test held at the track where the World record attempt will take place.

I think both myself and Russell were slightly apprehensive due to the length of the straight and we both wondered what would be our terminal speed and average lap time.

Before we had a chance to get the kart on the track the press arrived and a good hour was lost for the photo shoot. However it will all be good publicity. (hopefully)

We tried the kart on Maxxis HG1 tyres that we use in Rotax Max enduro and these proved to give lots of grip. whilst we know they are very good for longevity. We guesstimate we can do the event on possibly six sets.

The practice engine which we used first seemed to be a bit down on power but after changing the gearing twice it was only a second of the pace from the First race engine. Although I would have to say that we were not really going for an all out lap time. The best time was a low 46 second lap which was very promising as we used the full 1.3 kilometre track. This included the very slow first gear left hander that goes up the hill and eventually leads back on to the straight. Terminal speed before the braking area at the end of the back straight was a little over 100mph.

The kart performed faultlessly throughout the day with most of the Rye house issues resolved. There is still a lot of work to be done however the final shake down will be next Wednesday. Poor Russell who is doing most of the preparation work and design on the kart did not finish until gone 3am prior to the test he then had to pick me up at 5am to leave for Teesside. Top man Russell 110% commitment.

More news as it happens

Joe Flay


Now that my internal organs are back in there standard positions and my arms are functioning correctly. I thought it time to put pen to paper or finger to keyboard and share our recent adventure of twice round the clock at the Teesside Autodrome.

My first comment must go to the organiser and driver of this mammoth task, Russell Crowe who took this idea from conception through to the world record in just 3 short months.

The time, effort and considerable money that Russell has put into this effort is staggering to say the least.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank him for allowing me to be part of this world record breaking team

To put this record in to perspective not only did Russell select an engine that nobody had used before on a kart in the UK but had to design all the mounting points and all the ancillary items to make it work. To the best of my knowledge this is also a first time a gearbox kart has been used for a 24 hour run.

My thanks also go out to the other Equipe Vitesse drivers that are now part of motorsport history Simon the machine Rudd and the awesome Tom Huxtable all who performed as real professionals in all aspects of there duties, both as drivers and ambassadors in front of the considerable press that was with us over the two days.

Our two mechanics Bob Scott and peter Hammond these guys worked flat out for the complete duration of the event with no time for anything other than total dedication in keeping the world record attempt alive after numerous setbacks. Bob finally getting some sleep on the drive back home after some 36 hours of enforced insomnia. You guys are also the stars of this achievement.

Many thanks to Phil Rudd who played a vital role in documenting the attempt on paper, still photos and the video camera. I hope that the scars to your elbows and back are healing nicely after you fell of the kart whilst attempting to film the on board footage. I have to add that I was driving at the time and may have taken the last corner a bit quick. Seeing Phil rolling across the tarmac at great speed whilst still holding the camera off the ground to prevent any damage was sheer commitment. Phil I owe you one!

Not so many thanks to the official who tried to dampen our enthusiasm in trying to get the event stopped due to the little old lady 3 miles away who read of the attempt in the newspaper and thought it might disturb her beauty sleep.

Thank you to big Tony who made the effort to come up to teesside to eat all the Chinese food that had been laid on by the circuit Tony we love you.

Thank you to the hundreds of people from the teesside area who took the time and trouble to visit us and to show your support. Especially those families that stood for hours in the pouring rain on Thursday evening.

A very special thank you to my great Friend Bob Pope of Teesside karting who provided the circuit, staff support and great encouragement we could not have done it with out your help.

For the record

We covered 1704 laps of the 1.2 mile circuit which equates to 2056.7 Kilometres beating the old record by 347.7 Kilometres despite having one more corner to negotiate and ten hours of wet weather driving.

Each pilote completed the same amount of driving changing every 45 minutes in the dry and every 55 minutes in the wet.

Approximately 24,000 gear changes.

4 engine changes

240 litres of fuel countless containers of two stroke oil

3 sets of slicks and three sets of wets

One set of brake pads.

Unlimited amounts of enthusiasm and dedication

A Dvd and ebook of the event will be available shortly watch this space

Joe Flay

Equipe Vitesse #24

life is not measured by the amount of breath you take BUT measured by what takes your breath away.

News Update: Its now official.The record was officially ratified by the Guinness book of world records on Tuesday 22 October 2007

The first test at Rye showed real promise

Racing is life – everything else is just waiting!