Meet Captain Jack McClure, a racer from the early days of NASCAR who strapped a hydrogen peroxide-powered rocket on the back of a go-kart and went drag racing in it. Here's on-kart footage from his latest runs (at age 88!) at South Georgia Motorsports Park.
Mind you, this is exactly the kind of go-kart you think it is: tiny wheels with no driver restraints. (As a go-kart should be!) You're along for the ride, and the sheer force of being pressed into your seat by the rocket on the back should be enough to hold you in.
Jack's special silver firesuit had some velcro on the back and a neck-mounted parachute, but compared to the usual safety precautions of a roll cage and a harness, it seems a bit crazy.
Captain Jack's go-kart was never more than an exhibition act at NHRA dragstips in the 60s and 70s, but there was a good reason for that: his beefed-up kart would make five-second quarter-mile passes at over 240 mph.
Captain Jack's name came from his profession: he was a professional boat captain. In 1973, he sold the rocket kart and all its assorted gear to buy a commercial fishing vessel.
He could never get motorsports out of his blood, though. Thirty-four years later, he tracked down his old rocket kart and restored it back to working order with help from fellow racer Ky Michaelson.
After much back-and-forth with the NHRA over their safety concerns with an eightysomething running the old school drag kart at the drag strip again, they finally relented and let Captain Jack have a few 1/8 mile runs at South Georgia Motorsports Park's MoTeC World Finals.
Time slips posted on BangShift show that the 88-year-old racer posted a top speed of over 136 mph and a 4.733 second 1/8 mile time.
Captain Jack is back! Here's an external view of the mad pass filmed by Christine Perry, just to solidify how rowdy this thing really is.