Simms Medal for 2019 Awarded to Zef Eisenberg
The Club awards the prestigious Simms Medal to multiple speed record holder Zef Eisenberg.
The Simms Medal takes its name from one of the Club’s founding members, Frederick Simms and is among the most prestigious honours bestowed to individuals or a small company in recognition of an outstanding contribution to motoring innovation. The Simms Medal is only awarded in years when the Club’s Dewar and Simms Technical Committee believe that there are contenders of sufficient merit. This is one such year.
John Wood MBE, Chairman of the Simms Medal Committee, said “The Royal Automobile Club has celebrated many Land Speed Record holders over the decades, from Segrave to Cobb; Campbell, Noble, Green, Drayson and now Eisenberg who joins this illustrious list, all of which have push the boundaries of technology whether it be petrol, diesel, steam, gas turbine to electric powered vehicles.
Zef’s multiple speed record exploits on two and four wheels exemplifies “the spirit of adventure” which is at the heart of the Simms Medal. Zef is a man driven by technology and daring and very successfully – demonstrating its potential in the most extreme manner”.
Upon receiving the Simms Medal, Zef Eisenberg said “I’m very proud to have been awarded the Simms Medal. I’ve worked for the last eight years pushing the boundaries of engineering to deliver the most extreme and powerful motorbikes and cars, not just for show, but real performance racing, whether it’s our 480hp EISENBERG V8 motorbike, 564hp Rolls Royce Turbine powered motorbike, 400hp sand and ice motorbike, world’s fastest electric motorbike or even our record setting 1500hp “Porsche Sand racer’… pushing engineering and performance to a superior level is our DNA.
To be recognised by the prestigious Royal Automobile Club for what we have achieved is the icing on the cake”.
Zef Eisenberg is a man who responds to a challenge and the more extreme the better. He holds more than 52 British, World, ACU, FIM and Guinness speed records. In September 2016, he survived ‘Britain’s fastest-ever motorcycle crash’ at 230mph, on a 564hp Rolls-Royce jet turbine-powered motorcycle.
He broke 11 bones, was hospitalised for three months, spent a further three months in a wheelchair and had to learn to walk again. He defied doctors by racing exactly one year after the accident on the anniversary of the crash.
In May 2018, he achieved the world’s fastest motorbike record on sand. He was then challenged to repeat this success on four wheels and, with the support of ITV, this became the essence of a television series entitled ‘Speed Freaks’. His no nonsense approach to explaining the technology involved has been part of the success of this series and has also helped to inspire a coming generation of engineers.
In May this year, in a highly modified Porsche, he became the world’s only person to exceed 200mph on sand with a bike and car, as well as hold the flying mile record for both.
Then in September 2019, at the Straightliners ACU/FIM (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme) World Speed Records event held at Elvington, North Yorkshire, Eisenberg set four new FIM World Speed Records* for electric motorbikes (unfaired) and 1 ACU speed record* on board the Nottingham University Isle of Man TT zero (electric) bike.
The records included: the FIM Flying Kilometre speed of 185.103mph, with best one-way speed of 194.086mph, with GPS peak speeds of 197mph, the FIM Flying Quarter Mile, the FIM Standing Quarter, the FIM Standing Mile and ACU Flying Quarter Mile. *subject to final FIM/ACU ratification.
These speed records were particularly poignant to Eisenberg, as it was the bike that his MADMAX Team rider, Daley Mathison rode to his last three podium wins at the Isle of Man TT before being tragically killed in the Superbike TT race. Eisenberg undertook the records to honour the racer.
Eisenberg races under the ‘MADMAX Race Team’, which is renowned for developing and racing the world’s most extreme machines using the best engineers in the industry.