Former US national track, road, and mountain bike champion Denise Mueller-Korenek, 45 has smashed the land speed record on a bicycle, covering one mile at 183.932 mph on a custom-built carbon KHS. The attempt on Sunday at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah beat the previous record of 167mph, held by Dutchman Fred Rompleberg and destroyed the women’s record of 147.7mph.
Riding a special bike with two chains, Mueller-Korenek was towed behind a dragster until reaching 150 mph at the two-mile mark of the five-mile salt flats course, where she then released the cable tether, and pedaled the final three miles under her own power but behind the dragster’s “slipstream” as it accelerated to 184 mph.
“I’m speechless,” Mueller-Korenek told the Wall Street Journal. “It hasn’t hit me yet.”
Equipped with motorcycle wheels, her custom carbon fiber bike is long and low and features a pair of 60-tooth chainrings which work in combination with a 12-tooth cog, allowing Mueller to achieve up to 130 feet of travel on a single pedal stroke. The unusual set up is necessary to keep the bike accelerating at speeds far beyond 100 mph. Her race suit was made from leather, Kevlar and neoprene.
The record was set during the World of Speed, a four-day motorsports rally hosted by the Utah Salt Flats Racing Association and featuring high-speed race cars, motorcycles, and dragsters, including one with a bicycle behind it.