- Jason Liversidge
- 107.546 km/h kilometre(s) per hour
- United Kingdom (Elvington airfield)
The fastest speed achieved in a prototype electric mobility vehicle is 66.826 mph (107.546 km/h) by Jason Liversidge (UK) at Elvington airfield in North Yorkshire, UK, on 27 September 2020. Jason suffers from motor neuron disease and is paralysed from the neck down.
Jason, a self-confessed "adrenaline junkie" who loved skiing and motorcycling, was 37 years old when he was diagnosed with motor neuron disease (MND) in 2013, although he had been feeling the debilitating effects of the illness developing since 2008. The condition has gradually robbed him of his mobility, and other than in his left hand, which can make small movements, he is now completely paralysed from the neck down. Three years ago, with the help of engineer Graham Sykes, electric-vehicle specialist Ian Goodman, and Rod and Debbie Heald from the British design and engineering firm Heald, Jason began work on a custom-made electric wheelchair with the specific aim of breaking a world record and leaving behind a legacy for his daughters, Lilly and Poppy.
Jason's bespoke mobility vehicle was finally put to the test on the track at the Straightliners speed weekend, held at the Elvington airfield under the critical gaze of the UK Timing Association. His first two visits to the mile-long track saw Jason reach 51.3 and 52.7 mph, and on his third attempt, after increasing the battery voltage, he sped past the minimum requirement of 60 mph (95 km/h), achieving 66.826 mph.
Despite his physical limitations, Jason is not shy of a challenge. In 2017, he scaled Mount Snowdon – at 1,085 m (3,560 ft) the highest point in Wales – in his wheelchair, and later that year, he abseiled off the Humber Bridge. He went on to speed down the longest zipline in Europe, descend 33.5 m (110 ft) down the Lancaster Hole pot-hole in the Yorkshire Dales, and lap Silverstone in a Formula One-style car. "Having a life-limiting illness isn't a reason to stop living," says Jason, who uses his daredevil adventures to raise funds and awareness for MND research.