Loch Ness is currently the front-runner in possible testing grounds for Nigel Macknight’s bid to break the world water speed record set at 317.58mph by Australian Ken Warby nearly four decades ago.
Macknight’s goal is to break the 350 mph mark with the Quicksilver craft and he has no qualms about doing his testing on the same exact lake where famous British racer John Cobb died traveling at over 200mph when a flaw in his vessels bow caused the craft to nosedive.
No novice to the world of high speed performance craft, Macknight has spent the last 28 years and thousands of hours designing and building his turbofan-powered “superboat.”
He will make the attempt for the official world record on Lake Coniston, but since no testing is allowed on the lake he has hinted towards the possibility of Loch Ness.
He said: “I am confident we can break the record. When a record has stood for the best part of 40 years, it’s more likely to be beaten. Technology has moved on a lot in that time.
“You have to have respect for the danger, but I don’t think you go through what you are doing with too many nerves because getting the boat designed and built has been a huge job, consuming thousands of hours of my life.”
Macknight’s boat has a one-tonne, 10,000bph Rolls Royce engine positioned at the front for extra stability, and it’s 50% larger than the Bluebird model used by Malcolm Campbell prior to WWII.
The 60-year-old said: “We are looking for people to come forward from the time of the Cobb disaster.
“It will be a big thing for people in the north of Scotland, particularly for those living around Inverness and Loch Ness.”
His presentation at Eden Court will take place on April 20 from 7pm-9pm in the La Scala Cinema.
Mr Macknight also plans to visit the memorial to Mr Cobb, which stands by the side of Loch Ness near Urquhart Castle.