The Legend; Passing Out At 371 MPH
The day came for Mickey’s fourth attempt at the land speed record.
Fritz Voigt, a member of Mickey’s car building team, tells the story, “We couldn’t get the fumes out of the cockpit so we had a bottle of breathing oxygen on Mickey with a tube in his face mask to his mouth. For the race, I wanted to be at the finish line so another guy saw Mickey off but he forgot to turn on the oxygen. When Mickey realized he decided not to abort the run. So he raced without oxygen and when he crossed the finish line he shut everything off but he was still going awful fast. Then he passed out.”
Mickey recalls, “I was nauseated and exhausted. The last thing I remember thinking was I had better pop the chute.” (The parachute slowed the car to a point where regular brakes could be used to stop it).
Fritz takes up the story, “When the car finally came to a halt, I took his helmet off and saw he had passed out. I couldn’t jerk him out because of the publicity people all around, so I put the tube in his mouth and put the oxygen on full-bore. Pretty soon he started shaking his head. I was relieved because he was always such a proud bastard he wouldn’t want people thinking he was in bad shape. He had travelled at 371 mph that day.”