Freight company boss, Matt Everard, 46 of Billericay Essex has been accepted by The Guinness World of Records to challenge the current world record for the highest speed achieved on a Tuk Tuk.
On Monday 13th of May, Mr Everard and his cousin Russell Shearman, 49, from Tiptree Essex will be completing a world record attempt as driver and passenger and plan to exceed the current record of 68mph at Elvington Airfield in Yorkshire.
Popular for tourist taxi rides in Thailand and other Asian countries, this particular three-wheeled machine has benefitted from a recent full restoration. The original two stroke 350cc engine has been replaced with a modern 1300cc fuel-injected Daihatsu motor capable of taking the intrepid Essex cousins to speeds in excess of 90mph. Sponsored by Mr Everard’s Basildon based company Barrington Freight, the vehicle has been subject to a five month, £20,000 rebuild, including wide rear wheels, twin cooling radiators and many original tuk tuk parts imported from Thailand.
Manufactured in 1971 as a Bangkok Taxi, the unusual vehicle, affectionately known as the “Bangkok Bomber” has been owned by Mr Everard since 2017, when a late night eBay purchase led him to become the fifth UK owner of the vehicle since 1992. Now a common sight in Mr Everards home town of Billericay, the brightly coloured vehicle gets lots of attention as he drives it around.
Also known as an Auto Rickshaw, the name “Tuk Tuk” originates from the sound that the earliest models make.
“The original engine made an unforgettable “tuk tuk tuk tuk tuk” sound and left a smoke trail smelling of two stroke fuel.”
said Mr Everard. He continued,
“the original engine sound was so loud and distinctive that my wife said that she could hear me arriving home before she could see me”.
The Essex cousins have partnered with the motor sport event company Straightliners Ltd of Yorkshire who have officiated and provided the venue for many world record attempts on motorbikes and other unusual vehicles like “The World’s Fastest Shed” and “The World’s Fastest Toilet.”. As a second event, Mr Everard has also challenged Kevin Nicks the owner of the fastest shed to a drag race at the same venue later in the year.
“I am very excited at the prospect of being a World Record holder. I have been a big fan of the concept since my childhood watching the BBC TV Show “Record Breakers” with Roy Castle and Norris McWhirter as hosts.” admits Everard.