Thrust goes full throttle in the desert to set new land speed record of 714mph

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The Independent Online
The British team behind the Thrust jet-powered car (above) broke the world land speed record last night with an average speed of 714.3mph.

The car, powered by two jet engines from a Phantom fighter, rocketed across the Black Rock desert in Nevada reaching a top speed of 700.6mph on its first run and 728mph on its second, smashing the previous record of 633mph set in 1983.

The car became the first land vehicle to travel faster than 700mph on Tuesday. But to set a new land speed record - beating the mark held by the man behind Thrust, Richard Noble - it had to make two runs inside an hour of each other. The car's driver, Squadron Leader Andrew Green, 35, is an RAF Tornado pilot.

Scores of reporters and cameramen crowded around Noble as he waited to hear from the official timekeeper after Thrust completed its two runs. Cheers erupted as the result was announced, and Noble beamed: "It's a hell of a day. That's fantastic." After two further days' testing the team will attempt to break the sound barrier,which, in the conditions of the Nevada desert, is about 750 mph.