Jessi Combs, who died tragically in 2019 while attempting to raise the bar on the women’s land-speed record, has officially been named the fastest woman on Earth posthumously by Guinness. Combs’s fatal accident occurred in Oregon’s Alvord Desert on Aug. 27, 2019, where her two runs in the jet-powered car that she piloted averaged 522.783 mph (841.338 km/h).
But going fast wasn’t Jessi’s only accomplishment. Her shining personality and intimate knowledge of vehicles landed her on television where she was the host of Spike TVs Xtreme 4×4 for 4 years. She also made appearances on other shows including Mythbusters, All Girls Garage, Overhaulin, and Jay Lenno’s Garage. And Jessi was more than just a knowledgable vehicle enthusiast, she was also an accomplished driver. She logged wins at an impressive number of Ultra 4 races including King of the Hammers, the Western Regional Series, and Stampede to name a few.
Even though her partner Terry Madden has mixed feelings about the posthumous record, he reflected positively on the memory of Jessi doing what she loved. “It was a goal that she really wanted – and as hard as it is for me to even look at the car without crying. I’m so proud of her,” he added. “She woke up that morning to an alarm saying ‘let’s make history’ and we had an absolutely amazing day.”