Speed with Guy Martin: Episode 3 - Human Powered Aircraft

Attempting to build and fly the world's fastest human powered aircraft

The third installment of Speed with Guy Martin, an excellent series that follows motorcycle racing legend Guy Martin throughout a series of ambitious and adrenaline-fuelled challenges, aired on Channel 4 yesterday (Sunday 12 January).

This time Guy sets out to build and fly the world's fastest human powered aircraft.

Guy partners with a team from Southampton University who are tasked with seven months to design and build a succesful craft. At the heart of the machine is a Boardman time-trial bike, fully encased in a fairing with large wings. Its transmission had been modified to convert Martin's power to a mid-mounted fibreglass propellor.

First, Guy is trained on how to fly a glider with stunt pilot Guy Westgate. The team then visit a velodrome to determine Guy's cycling power output and devise a training schedule to get him pushing out the the figures required to get the craft airborne and to sustain flight.

Guy then gets the opportunity to pitch his craft against others developed by leading engineers in the Icarus Cup. Visit the Channel 4 website to watch the episode.

Episodes one and two are also well worth catching up on. The first follows Guy as he succesfully breaks the British record for outright speed on a bicycle, hitting an amazing 112.94mph!

Oli Woodman

Section Editor, UK
With more than 10 years of experience riding mountain bikes, Oli knows the good from the bad when it comes to gear. He's a total bike nerd and loves few things more than fettling with spangly riding bits. Also, he seems to have a talent for crashing hard but emerging unscathed.
  • Discipline: Mountain
  • Preferred Terrain: Loamy singletrack
  • Current Bikes: Marin Pine Mountain, Pinnacle Dolomite
  • Dream Bike: Honda RN01
  • Beer of Choice: Corona
  • Location: Bristol, UK
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