Jessi Combs, a well-known fabricator, vehicle builder, racer, TV host and more, was killed on Aug. 27 in a crash while attempting to break her own land-speed record.
The crash occurred on the Alvord Desert dry lake bed in Oregon shortly after 4pm. Combs was in a jet-powered land-speed car looking to break her own record of 398 mph that she set back in 2013, claiming the title the “fastest woman on four wheels.”
Back in 2018, Combs did hit 483 mph in a single shakedown run with her jet car, but because of mechanical troubles, she wasn’t able to repeat the run and get the official record.
Combs was famous in the automotive space thanks to her start on television shows like Xtreme 4×4, Overhaulin’, Truck U, and Two Guys Garage. She was the brains behind Velocity’s All Girls Garage and she was even a host and builder for a season on Mythbusters.
Off-road racing was a serious passion for Jessi Combs, who was the first woman to place at King of the Hammers. She also took home a Class 10 podium finish from the Baja 1000 and ran the Rallye Aicha des Gazelles.
Combs wanted to push beyond the 512 mph mark and become the “Fastest Woman on Earth,” a title set by Kitty O’Neil in 1976.
Jessi Combs will be remembered in the automotive and off-road community as a racer, fabricator, advocate for women and a positive influence all around. Our condolences go out to her family and friends.