What vehicles or animals could your car beat in a race?

Photo credit: Martin Pettitt

If you were intrigued by the recent story about a Red Bull racing car taking on a jet fighter then maybe you are wondering what vehicles or animals you would have a chance of beating in your own car…

A horse – win

Do you fancy taking on a horse? The good news is that you could give even Shergar, Red Rum or err other famous horses a sound beating.  Our equine buddies have a top speed of about 40-50mph, even when a diminutive jockey is cracking his whip like mad on top of one. Unless your car is an absolute disaster you should quickly pass a horse. The only problem I can think of is if you suddenly see Beecher’s Brook looming up in front of you.

A cheetah – win over distance, probably lose over a sprint

Ah, so you already know that the cheetah is the fastest land animal in the world, do you? In that case the fact that it has a top speed of around 70 mph won’t be news to you. Clearly any decent car will pass a cheetah at some point but unless you have a sports car it might take you some time to catch it in the first place. You see, cheetahs have an incredible acceleration which sees them get from 0-60 in only 3 seconds. This sort of blistering acceleration can only be matched by the most powerful sports cars. The Wikipedia list of cars with a 0.60 mph time of less than 3 seconds is pretty exclusive, with McLaren, Porsche and Lamborghini some of the few manufacturers on it. On the other hand, one of the world’s slowest accelerating cars is said to be the 2012 Mia Electric vehicle, which takes 30 seconds to get up to this speed. In fact, with a maximum speed of 60 mph you’ll need to play the long game and wait for the big cat to tire before you can overtake it.

A train – depends

Have you ever seen a train alongside the road and tried to race it, you reckless fool you? Whether you won or not will have depended upon a lot of factors. For example, if you take on the 267 mph Shanghai Maglev or the 223 mph AGV Italo then you don’t stand much chance. However, there are plenty of slow trains in the world, from the zig zagging Devil’s Nose ride in Ecuador to the only passenger train in Cambodia and some of the UK’s own quaint heritage lines.

What other vehicles or animals do you think you could take on and beat?

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