Steam-powered ‘rocket’ bike wows at Elvington

A ‘rocket’ bike powered by nothing more than steam has set a 1/8th mile record at Elvington Airfield

a steam powered drag racing motorcycle

A husband and wife duo have achieved a UK speed record with their self-built steam-powered ‘rocket’ bike, hitting a top speed of 163.8mph - although the pair claim there is more to come.

The bike, nicknamed ‘Force of Nature’ due to its power source, is fuelled by nothing more than super-heated water that is contained within a tank between the rider’s legs. When the tree turns green, valves are opened which allow the super-heated steam to rush out via two nozzles on the rear of the bike. This forces the bike forward at a phenomenal rate of knots, with its rider, Graham Sykes, alluding to a speed of more than 180mph once the bike had already passed the finish line.


Force of Nature is a similar idea to that seen on Eric Teboul’s drag bike we reported on last year. Eric managed to sneak under the 5-second quarter mile time, rounding out his career in fine style in his final ever drag bike run. His bike does differ slightly from this machine though, in that his bike is powered by hydrogen peroxide, although the concept of using this to create thrust remains the same. 

Eric Teboul on his hydrogen peroxide rocket bike at Santa Pod last year

One bonus of using thrust to power a motorcycle is that the machine will have a natural propensity to remain level as it accelerates. Most drag bikes, with other-worldly power outputs, will try and send the front wheel skywards when the throttle is opened, causing the bike to lean back on a wheelie or the rider to close the throttle. Both of these things can lose time in a run, something that thrust-powered machines don’t have to worry about.

Ducati Diavel V4 Review 2023

Ducati Diavel V4 Review 2023 | Italian power cruiser ridden on UK roads | Visordown