The Guy Driving The SSC Tuatara Doesn’t Seem So Sure About That Record Either

Illustration for article titled The Guy Driving The SSC Tuatara Doesn’t Seem So Sure About That Record Either
Screenshot: Instagram, SSC

Remember yesterday when we were talking about all of the confusion and scrutiny that the video purporting to show the SSC Tuatara setting a record production-car-on-public-road speed of 331 mph was generating? Well, just to make sure this heaping helping of clusterfudge is even fudgier, the driver of the car for the record attempt, noted racer Oliver Webb, has released a video on Instagram admitting even he doesn’t know what the hell is going on, either.

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Here’s the video Webb posted yesterday:

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Webb states that, of the record attempt or its validity, “I know nothing other than what I’m finding out online,” and “I have no hard data,” and, as he’s not under any sort of contract with SSC, is not under any obligation to say anything. Or not say anything. Or even have any clue what’s going on, like all of us don’t.

If the guy actually driving the car when the record supposedly happened doesn’t feel confident enough to say that the record did indeed happen, then, uh, I’m not sure what to tell you here.

It’s possible the Tuatara did break that record. Totally possible. But, as of this moment, there’s no hard proof. It’s not clear if there’s another video that can be released to prove anything, it’s not clear if somehow maybe the timing calibration was compromised, nothing is really clear at all, which makes it all the more baffling why SSC would have gone public with this in the first place with everything such a mess.

Did they not think people wouldn’t be scrutinizing that video frame-by-frame? Has anyone at SSC been to the internet before?

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No one doubts that the car is plenty fast. But there’s so much questionable stuff going on here, about videos, timing, tires, calibration, whether or not the fucking driver knows if he set a record or not, that I think the whole mess is eclipsing everything else.

Hopefully, we’ll get some more conclusive data soon. Until then, it’s still fun to drive at speeds way less than 331 mph, so, big picture, I’m not even sure how much this matters.

Senior Editor, Jalopnik • Running: 1973 VW Beetle, 2006 Scion xB, 1990 Nissan Pao, 1991 Yugo GV Plus, 2020 Changli EV • Not-so-running: 1977 Dodge Tioga RV (also, buy my book!: https://rb.gy/udnqhh)

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DISCUSSION

icouldntfindaclevername
Icouldntfindaclevername

He was too busy watching the road to pay attention to the speedo?