During the 1999 Goodwood Festival of Speed, German racing driver Nick Heidfeld managed to complete the event's 1.16-mile hill climb in a scant 41.6 seconds behind the wheel of a McLaren MP4-13 Formula One race car.
It’s a record that stands to this day—even after the close of the 2017 Goodwood Festival of Speed held this past weekend.
Heidfeld, a regular at the British festival of all things automotive, had hoped to break his record, this time driving a Mahindra M4Electro Formula E race car. This is the car Heidfeld will drive for season four (2017-18) of the electric car racing series. The cars have approximately 250 horsepower and reach a top speed of 140 mph.
Heidfeld took to the hill on each of the four days of the festival but the best time he could muster was 48.59 seconds. Unfortunately for Mahindra and Heidfeld, the time is also behind the current record for electric cars, the 47.34 set by a Lola-Drayson prototype sports car in 2013. It was a record for open-wheel electric cars, though.
Despite missing out on the overall electric car record, Heidfeld remains upbeat and vowed to return next year in order to claim the record.
“It was great fun to drive up the hill with the target of setting a new electric single-seater record, which we managed to do,” he said in a statement. “But I think we have to come back to challenge the outright electric record.”
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