Almost a year and a half ago I first reported about this record-breaking attempt effort forged between Venturi’s Voxan electric motorcycle brand and World Superbike champ Max Biaggi. It took the company a very long time to actually make it happen, but make it happen they have. With a bike they call the Voxan Wattman, Biaggi hit a top speed of 409 km/h on his way to setting eleven new FIM records.
The initial plan was to run at the salt pans in Bolivia, but the Monegasque company decided instead to run at the Châteauroux airfield in France last Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. With 274kW pumping out of its Mercedes Formula E race car motor, the Voxan raced in two different configurations, the non-streamlined version above, and the partially streamlined version seen below.
On a runway just over two miles long, it’s difficult to get a flying mile time, as you’re still accelerating when you get to the timing line, and you need a good bit of distance on the back end to haul yourself back down from 250. The semi-streamliner record was owned by Ryuji Tsuruta and his Mobitec EV-02A race bike, which set a record of 328 km per hour at Bonneville last year. Biaggi bumped that record up to 367 km per hour, hitting an indicated 409 km/h in the process. The same run, but un-streamlined this time, netted the team a two-way average of 349 km/h, with an indicated 372 km/h top speed.
While Biaggi was chasing 12 new records across three days of running, the moto champion only managed to bring home eleven of them. Granted, seven of the records did not have anything to beat, so he easily took those by just attempting them.
- ¼ mile, flying start, partially streamlined: 394.45 km/h – no previous record
- – ¼ mile, flying start, non-streamlined: 357.19 km/h – no previous record
- 1 km, flying start, partially streamlined: 386.35 km/h – previous record: 329.31 km/h (330 km/h)
- ¼ mile, standing start, non-streamlined: 126.20 km/h – no previous record
- ¼ mile, standing start, partially streamlined: 127.30 km/h – previous record: 87.16 km/h (87 km/h)
- 1 km, standing start, non-streamlined: 185.56 km/h – no previous record
- 1 km, standing start, partially streamlined: 191.84 km/h – previous record: 122.48 km/h (122 km/h)
- 2 km, standing start, non-streamlined: 222.82 km/h – no previous record
- 2 km, standing start, partially streamlined: 225.01 km/h – no previous record
“When Gildo Pastor, the President of the Venturi Group, approached me about this project, I was curious, very motivated, and at the same time a little uncertain. Having said that, right after our first meeting, I quickly realised that, like Gildo, his teams were driven by an incredible belief and determination. They told me “we came close to 600 km/h (600 km/h) on four wheels, and now we want to flirt with 400 km/h (401 km/h) on two wheels, nothing’s going to stop us!” These records make me a happy man! I’m proud of the team and delighted to bring these titles back to Monaco!” – Max Biaggi, rider of the Voxan Wattman
Seems neat. I’d like to ride a motorcycle powered by a Formula E motor. Of course, I’d chicken out around 160. Good on Max Biaggi for not being a chicken.