Coasting Downhill in a Quest

The following nice 10 minute video shot by William Hunt somewhere in the US desert-lands shows what can be achieved just by smoothing the shape of a moving body.  Without pedalling he tops 55 mph!

Meanwhile back in the UK we have another velonaut breaking the speed limt in a Quest XS.  According to the subtitles top-speed is 62 mph with a previous record of 67 mph

2 thoughts on “Coasting Downhill in a Quest

  1. I have to say that the second of these videos made me feel very uncomfortable. Especially since I had only recently heard of four serious accidents, two fatalities involving velomobiles. The first fatality was in Germany and seems to have been the velomilist’s fault (we only have the car driver’s account) (Milan
    Whereas the second fatality was in France and was a single vehicle crash (WAW, and appears to have been lack of experience and perhaps bad luck. A third crash in the Netherlands involved a Quest, and seems to have been a loss of control, in icy conditions – a head-on with a truck. I understand the Quest rider survived, but was badly injured, IIRC, he is recovering.
    There is also a Mango crash, I believe in the Netherlands, but I couldn’t get much out of the translation.

    Riding at such high speed in icy conditions in a tricycle made me cringe. I haven’t looked at the YouTuber’s page, but I expect he’s quite young and still believes he’s immortal. He’ll learn, I genuinely hope it won’t be the hard way. I speak as a velomobilist to be. I accept I have a lot to learn, but kinetic energy isn’t forgiving.
    Please ride safely.

    • Sorry for the delay “approving” your comment. Thanks for the links. Riding safe involves riding within the limits of your own experience. Lack of experience seems to have been a factor in the French fatality.

      A couple of points worth weighing. Yanto the author of the second video does title his video as one of “extremes”. If I have my facts right he is also a member of the BHPC and an experienced HPV racer. He has also crashed a previous velomobile and as I understand it was not so much the speed as the hard or sharp cornering that caused the crash – in which there were no injuries to speak of. He knows the road and he knows what he is doing.

      While kinetic energy is proportional to velocity squared it is also proportional to mass. A fact often missed by commentators is that in a velomobile typically 2/3 of the mass is the rider. Contrast that with the average motorbike going 65+ down the same road in which the bike is 2/3 of the mass, and being a bike lacks the stability of a third wheel if it hits ice. Which is more common? Which has the greatest energy? Which is the least safe?

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