Bloodhound SSC

Bloodhound SSC Land Speed Record company enters administration

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The company behind the bid to break the Land Speed Record using a rocket-powered car, has gone into administration.

FRP Advisory, which recently handled the administration of Formula 1 team Force India, have been appointed administrators of Bloodhound Programme Ltd.

The company has built a “viable racing car”, according to FRP, but faces a £25 million shortfall to complete the project. The team has set a target of breaking the Land Speed Record and raising it to at least 1,000mph (1,609kph) using its Bloodhound SSC.

The administrators believe a record bid could still take place within 10 months if an investor is found.

Joint administrator Andrew Sheridan said “Bloodhound is a truly ground-breaking project which has already built a global audience and helped to inspire a new generation of STEM [science, technology, engineering and mathematics] talent in the UK and across the world.

“Entering into administration provides some breathing space to identify an investor who will bring the guaranteed funding, impetus and expertise required to drive the project forward.

“Whilst not an insignificant amount, the £25m Bloodhound requires to break the land speed record is a fraction of the cost of, for example, finishing last in a F1 season or running an Americas Cup team. This is an opportunity for the right investor to leave a lasting legacy. We are already in discussion with a number of potential investors and would encourage any other interested party to contact us without delay.”

Bloodhound Programme has already attracted backing from Rolls Royce, Rolex and the Ministry of Defence. The Northern Cape Provincial Government in South Africa supported the creation of a special 18 kilometre long, 1,500 metre-wide drag strip for the car’s record bid.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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12 comments on “Bloodhound SSC Land Speed Record company enters administration”

  1. Fred is cashed up and looking for a drive to do something no other F1 driver has done ,

    1. @greg-c he could glue a Honda logo on one side just for the LOLs

  2. 25M £GBP is about the cupcake quota for afternoon tea for BP (Castrol) who they seem to have given a prime spot on the hull on this vanity project…

  3. It’s a shame, I’m sure it was all well-intentioned. However, braking the land speed record always seemed like an outdated concept to me. In a culture of autonomous vehicles, AI and electric/hybrid engines, using a rocket to do anything other than space travel just seems like the wrong direction.

    1. Hence the ‘lasting’ heritage? :)

  4. I love this car its truly amazing it would be shame if it never ran, but i smell crowdfunding on the horizon unless some company backs this. I wonder how long it will take to get an electric hybrid to do 1000mph?

  5. I dunno, I’m not buying the “all we need is £25 million, and we’ll go 1000 mph, is a done deal” sales pitch. Yes, they need that much money to be able to continue the project, and yes, they want to go that fast. But I see two potential pitfalls in that plan: A) There’s no guarantee they won’t be asking for even more money after a while; B) there’s no guarantee money’s the only hurdle between them and breaking that record.

    Additionally, anything that only makes sense in imperial units is pretty much unmarketable outside of the Anglosphere. Even to me, and I consider myself rather more cosmopolitan than the average European Joe, “1000 miles per hour” do not sound much more impressive than “1000 blimps per oomph”. It can be converted to 1609 kph, in other words: more than 1,600 kph, and yes, that does sound fast. But you’d have a hard time explaining why you’re targetting over 1,600 kph. 1,500 kph sounds a lot more meaningful, and that’d still be enough to shatter the old record by a margin of over 270 kph.

    Long story short: They’re limiting themselves to backers from the UK or US, mainly. Which wouldn’t be unheard of. But then again, the fact that their sales pitch raises several questions means that they probably shouldn’t address too small a target audience if they want the money.

    1. First thing to say – I think the educational projects that have been run in association with this have been really worthwhile – they have been at various schools and events running workshops to make “rocket” powered cars and the Bloodhound mock up is a spectacular-looking vehicle that engages youngsters with engineering. The educational work is not affected by the administration.


      I’ve been re-reading previous coverage of the project. It is 10 years (almost to the day) since it was announced as a £12m project. It is at least 4 years over schedule already. £25m to finish it off within 10 months seems rather unlikely in that context. I also understand that there have been a number of private donations to the project, I hope that they will be properly accounted for by the administrators. I would be interested to know how much the car project itself has actually cost over the last decade.

      I also share the view that fossil-fuel powered land-speed records don’t “speak” to the world in the way they once did.

      1. If there are any accountants/auditors reading the thread I would be interested to know what you think of their recent filings at Companies House. Massive restatement of the value of the fixed assets a couple of years ago (from £17m to just £1m), creditors far exceeding debtors, and significant payments to directors and consultants associated with the project. May all be very easy for a financial professional to explain though.

        1. To be fair, it actually looks like directors have not taken payment for a lot of what they are potentially owed.

  6. Drat – I was looking forwards to this thing going for it.
    Come on some one with money to burn (Mr Stroll?) make this happen!

  7. “You can’t always get what you want.” Petrol heads love this stuff, but the project has been around so long it’s gone past it’s Best Before date. It’s starting to look like a way to guarantee long-term employment. What’s next 1200 mph and then 1500mph? Then you deploy wings and take off? There’s no point to this.

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