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Donald Campbell dies attempting World Water Speed Record

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Uploaded on Feb 23, 2009

4.1.67 'Fate Stepped In': Donald Campbell dies attempting World Water Speed Record.
The cause of the crash has been variously attributed to Campbell not waiting to refuel after doing a first run of 297.6 mph (478.9 km/h), and hence the boat being lighter; the wash caused by his first run and made much worse by the use of the water brake; and, possibly, a cut-out of the jet engine caused by fuel starvation. Some evidence for this last possibility may be seen in film recordings of the crash - as the nose of the boat climbs and the jet exhaust points at the water surface no disturbance or spray can be seen at all. Mr Whoppit, Campbell's teddy bear mascot, was found among the floating debris. Royal Navy divers made strenuous efforts to find and recover Campbell's body but, although the wreck of K7 was soon found, they called off the search without locating his body.

Campbell's last words on his final run were, via radio intercom:

Pitching a bit down here...Probably from my own wash...Straightening up now on track...Rather close to Peel Island...Tramping like mad...er... Full power...Tramping like hell here... I can't see much... and the water's very bad indeed...I can't get over the top... I'm getting a lot of bloody row in here... I can't see anything... I'm going.... oh!

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