John Hennessey Admits Defeat at the Hands of Christian Von Koenigsegg
He’s By No Means Going Belly-Up Though
John Hennessey had the world captivated by the unveiling of his new 300mph monster of a car, the Hennessey Venom F5, at SEMA 2017. Just days later, though, his previous record of 270.49 mph was crushed by Koenigsegg, which employed a very special iteration of the Agera RS to reach speeds of up to 284.55 mph. In a recent interview, Top Gear reached out to John Hennessey to get his thoughts on the matter.
While most of us would probably be at least a little bit upset about something like this, John proved himself to be quite the gentleman, and actually welcomes the competition this event is going to bring about.
“Those guys crushed our number and I think it’s great,” said Hennessey. “Christian did it right. He just played it cool and built a dedicated car to smoke everybody. He laid the hammer down.”
John actually had a friend texting him live updates from the day Koenigsegg shut down a little strip of highway north of Pahrump, Nevada, so he wasn’t exactly caught by surprise when the official numbers were posted.
“My first thought was ‘did they run both directions?’, because that’s a question everybody asks us,” said Hennessey. “Then I wondered if they’d brought proper Racelogic VBOX equipment to validate the data. I later heard that they did. So once I saw the official news come out on Instagram and then YouTube, I looked at it and I thought they did it right. And fair play to them.”
John Hennessey Makes Clear His Thoughts About Guinness-Verified Records
Many consider the 270.49 mph run of the Venom GT to be unofficial and give the true praise the Bugatti Veyron SuperSport since Hennessey didn’t ‘follow the rules’. When the Venom GT did its iconic speed run at the Kennedy Space Center, NASA only allowed them to run in one direction, which starkly contrasts the accepted norm of running in both directions and averaging the speeds.
“I think Guinness is irrelevant,” said Hennessey. “They’re a business. They’ve certified records for us, but does Guinness need to certify a record for yards rushing or number of touchdown passes made in the NFL? No. I don’t think that you need to have Guinness there to make a number official.”
Hennessey Welcomes New Challengers to the Speed Game
Instead of wallowing in soul-crushing defeat, John has the right idea of not taking things too seriously. Not only is he eager to best Koenigsegg’s run, he even wants Bugatti to enter the race before he unleashes the Venom F5 once and for all.
“I’m not worried about it [Koenigsegg’s speed], I’m excited and motivated,” said Hennessey. “I’ve been waiting almost four years for somebody to better the record. And once you have more players that are playing in the top speed game, then you have more relevance.”
“It all puts pressure on Bugatti, to step up and deliver the number that everybody expects them to do. Then we’ll let those guys duke it out for a little while, then, once we figure out which one of those guys [Koenigsegg and Bugatti] is going the fastest, then we’ll take the F5 out and lay down a number.”
So who do you think it will be? While Koenigsegg is currently the top dog in the contest, Bugatti is a rather big name capable of posting rather big numbers. Does the Chiron have what it takes to beat Koenigsegg’s record? Does the Venom F5 have what it takes to be the king of speed? And more importantly, are we going to see Elon Musk cast his own hat in the ring when the production model of the new and improved Tesla Roadster is introduced?
We’ll just have to wait and see, unfortunately. This is going to be a long game, with slow and calculated moves, so settle in for the long haul and hopefully, within the next couple of years, we’ll have an answer to who is the true king of speed.
For now, at least.
Are We Going to See Some Wildcards Enter This Race?
Let’s also not forget that McLaren, AMG, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Pagani, and Aston Martin are all still alive and well. While none of these brands have made themselves particular announced in the arena, these are all some serious names with some serious power behind them. Until the dust has settled, there’s really no telling who is going to be the king of speed.
While some of these brands are going to carry on, business as usual, paying no mind to this absurd race to 300 mph, we’re willing to bet that at least one of them is going to have something to say on the matter. McLaren might be more focused on developing track weapons, but whose to say that they don’t have an opinion on the matter as well?
Only time will tell, my petrol-headed friends.