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Rosco McGlashan
(1950 - )  

Aussie Invader (1972-2002)

Aussie Invader II (1989-1997)

Aussie Invader III (1997-2006)

Aussie Invader IV (1996-2002)

Aussie Invader 5R (2009- )

Rosco McGlashan OAM an Australian Drag racing record-holder, who currently holds the Australian land speed record at 500 mph (802.6 km/h). This record was set on the 27 March 1994 on the dry salt flats of Lake Gairdner, South Australia 440 km (275 miles) northwest of Adelaide.

McGlashan set the record in his jet powered car, Aussie Invader II. The car was powered by a 36,000 hp Atar jet engine from a Mirage jet fighter aeroplane. In February 1995 Rosco and his team headed back to Lake Gairdner for an assault at the 633.468 mph (1,013.55 km/h) world land speed record, held by Richard Noble. This attempt was not a success, due to poor salt conditions, the course being very wet in places. McGlashan ran off course and hit the metal timing equipment at 960 km/h (600 mph). McGlashan walked away but the car was destroyed.

McGlashan then built his next car Aussie Invader III. With this car McGlashan hoped to challenge Andy Green and Craig Breedlove to be the first to Mach 1 on land. But again the salt conditions were too bad for high speed record runs. And on October 15, Andy Green reached 763.035 mph (1,227.99 km/h), the first supersonic record (Mach 1.016).

Needing a car with more power, McGlashan has announced that he has designed a new car, Aussie Invader 5R. The car will be his biggest and most powerful yet at 18 metres (58.5 ft) in length and 3 metres (10 ft) high at the tailfin. This car will be rocket-powered and is designed for speed greater than 1,000 mph or (1,600 km/h).

McGlashan also hold drove a rocket powered Go-Kart to 253 mph (407 km/h) - still the fastest in the world.

Biography

Rosco was born in Perth Western Australia in 1950, as a child he spet his time in an orphanage but wheever he could he would tinker with anything that had wheels, trying to go faster than the other kids on the block.

At the age of 12 the late Donald Campbell visited Australia with his Bluebird turbine powered land speed racer, Rosco was so intent on building and racing a car faster than Campbell's tha th equit shool the and there and went working in his home State's far north, where with an age adjustment from 12 to 16 years put him in his first job.

His desire to beat Campbell's World Land Speed of 403MPH has taken him many long years. His first motor racing break came in 1968 when he was given the drive in a Pro Stock Drag vehicle. Rosco was an instant success story in Drag Racing and earned his living in this field for many years. Some of his high speed exploits can be seen on his website which include a V8 motorcycle, rocket powered world record holding go-kart (253MPH), jet dragsters which achieved 315MPH, jet funny cars and even helping out with a jet powered truck.

In 1993 Rosco with the help of the 25 professional people all volunteers had assembled his first land speed racer known as "Aussie Invader II" powered by a 36,000hp Mirage jet fighter engine. This racer was a culmination of 10 years of blood, sweat and tears. On it's first outing, Aussie Invader II reached a speed of 450MPH but due to bad weather the team were forced away from their salt lake race venue in central Australia, back to their base in Western Australia to regroup and prepare for their next attack on the Australian Land Speed Record of 403MPH.

1994 saw a revamped Aussie Invader II and a much more experienced race team, the weather gods however were again not kind. Rosco McGlashan became the "Fastest Aussie on Earth" with an offical500MPH 2 way pass. Rosco not being content to settle with an Australian record convinced a nervous team that the hd to have a go at the World Land Speed Record despite poor salt onditions, rain and bad light. A week later Rosco ran his racer southbound on a track in very poor condition, at 580MPH Aussie Invader II broke through the salt surface and tram lined through the timing equipment 200 yards off side from the tracks measured mile. Aussie Invader II was a write-off.

Imeadiately the team went to work on a newer, sleeker, more powerful car known as Aussie Ivader III. The Aussie Invader team returned to Lake Gairdner in South Australia in 1996 and after some test passes recorded a peak speed of 643MPH which was faster than the World Record Land Speed record held at that time by Richard Noble at 633MPH, however to claim a new world record, 2 passes must be made in opposite directions within one hour, again bad weather prevented the team from achieving this goal. In 1997 the British in their twin jet engine car ran 763MPH, creating the biggest jump in hisotry of the Land Speed Record, their car was going supersonic on the way and Aussie Invader III was made redundant.

After witnessig the success of Spaceshi One's historic flight, Rosco knew he needed rocket power to set his next record ad the professional help of rocket legends Bo Truax and the tea at Rocket Lab based in Auckland NZ to get him to the holy grail of Land Speed Records, 1000MPH.

  • Awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 1998 by the Queen of England for his services to motorsport and for setting a new Australian Lad Speed Record
  • Given the "Premiers Award", Western Australia by the Premier of the State, Richard Court MLA in 1999
  • Entered in the Australian Roll of Honour by the Governor General Sir Nichael Jefferies in 2001 as the "Fastest Aussie on Earth"
  • Confederation of Australian Motorsport award 2001

 

Rosco started his motorsport career riding competition motorcycles at Surfers Paradise International Raceway. He then graduated to the amazing Australian designed and built 'Crazyhorse' V8 powered motorcycle. This was an incredible machine which had no clutch, so the back wheel would sit up in a cradle, then Rosco would give it a rev and just rock it off the cradle! "It spat me off a few times and when it spat you off it did it in a big way!" remembers Rosco.

 

This was followed by an even higher performance rocket-powered bike which was so fast that it was not allowed to be raced on Australian tracks. Also the very volatile hydrogen peroxide rocket-fuel was very hard to come by because of its unpredicable charactistics and was soon banned by the Australian Government.

To even think of such a machine, let alone ride it further adds to this mans infatuation with speed and his 'dare to be different' approach. You can't help but wonder what this machine would have done if allowed to have it's head... the mind boggles!!

!

 



 

During 1980 Rosco lived in the USA and was instrumental in the developement of a rocket-powered Go-Kart in which he hit 253mph (407 km/h)! "It was incredible feeling sitting in that thing with the fuel bubbling and gurgling just behind your head and then hitting the trottle" says Rosco with a smile "It was truly an awesome machine" he added. It is still the fastest in the world and is now housed at the very prestigious York Motor Museum (60km east of Perth) along with other such great and famous vehicles such as Allan Jones' World Driver's Championship winning Williams Formula One Car.

 
In subsequent years Australia's fastest man has been heavily involved in Drag Racing and speed exhibitions. Even with preliminary work on the Land Speed Record attempt which consumed much of his time, Rosco regularly appeared with 'Aussie Invader I', his Jet Turbine powered Dragster, at a number of displays each year and is in constant demand for shopping centre and retail outlet displays.    

Aussie Invader (1972-2002)

  • Powered by J34 Westinghouse jet engine with purpose built after-burner
  • engine originally fitted to the Lockheed Neptune as a JATO engine
  • 6,500 lbs thrust
  • 5,500 horsepower
  • best speed 315MPH
  • best elapsed time 1/4 mile 5.97seconds
 

Aussie Invader IV (1996-2002)

  • Powered by a Westinghouse jet engine with purpose built after-burner
  • engine originally fitted to Lockheed Neptune as a JATO engine
  • 6,500 lbs thrust
  • 5,500 horsepower
  • best speed 248MPH
  • best elapsed time 1/4 mile 6.01seconds
   

Links

  • http://www.aussieinvader.com/
   

The Fastest Aussie on Earth - This is a sample from the award winning documentary Encounters With Speed about Rosco McGlashan's breaking of the Australian Land Speed record and his last attempt at breaking the World Record, which is coming to YouTube soon. DVDs of the documentary can be purchased from www.storyteller.com.au

Fastest Aussie on Earth Land Speed Record - More on Rosco McGlashan the fastest Aussie on Earth, introduced by Peter Brock.

Rosco McGlashan and his Rocket Kart - Rosco McGlashan, the fastest Aussie on the Earth was the VIP guest at the 2011 Theo's Run in Dowerin, Western Australia. Rosco was astounded to find the organisers has located and borrowed his rocket powered go kart from the early 1980's. He still holds the world record for driving this.

 
 
 

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