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The Cheetah

The Dexter Hysol Cheetah is a fully faired semi-recumbent two wheeled Human Powered Vehicle (HPV). The Cheetah currently holds the world speed record for the 200 meter flying start event. This event allows a virtually unlimited run up to a 200 meter speed trap. Chris (The Punisher) Huber rode the Cheetah to an an average speed of 68.73 mph through the speed trap. The record was set at about 6:55 PM mountain standard time on September 22, 1992. The course was on Six Mile Lane which is a flat road which crosses a Bison preserve in the San Luis valley, Colorado. Of course, the Cheetah is named after the fast cat of the same name.

The Cheetah is predominantly constructed of carbon fiber composites with aluminum inserts bonded in with Hysol adhesives. Bicycle components donated by Campagnolo included a tensioned Kevlar rear disk wheel and a generous selection of alloy chainrings and freewheels. Most other components were custom designed and fabricated by the Cheetah Team. The aerodynamic fairing which encloses the rider of the Cheetah is also constructed of carbon fiber composite. Aerodynamic design and advice was provided by Michael Selig (currently an assitant professor of aeronautical engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champagne). The shape of the Cheetah was designed by the Cheetah Team using a custom written Macintosh program. The Cheetah weighs in at 29.5 pounds complete with fairing and ready to ride.

Now HEAR this: The Cheetah Breaks the World Speed Record. You heard it here! (Note: 40KB ".au" audio clip.)

The International Human Powered Vehicle Association (IHPVA) participated in and sanctioned the event. Two IHPVA officials witnessed the event and the timing equipment was provided by the IHPVA. For more information about IHPVA, see their website ( The format and rules for the 200 meter flying start event were originally proposed by DuPont with a $25,000 price to be awarded to the first HPV to exceed 65 mph. This was accomplished and the prize awarded to the Gold Rush, ridden by Freddie Markham, in 1986 with an average speed of 65.48 mph. The current record of 68.73 mph set by The Cheetah team September 22, 1992 still stands.

These Cheetah pages are mainted by co-designer and builder of The Cheetah, James R. Osborn.

©2000 James R. Osborn. This page last updated 2/2/2000.