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9 Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About The Fastest Things In The World

In honour of Aviva being title sponsor of Brake's Road Safety Week 2017, here are some fast facts you won't forget in a hurry.

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1. One of the world's fastest swimmers can clear a pool in under 21 seconds.

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The current world record for the 50-metre freestyle swim stands at 20.26 seconds. That's an average speed of 5.51mph, but going at that speed it'd still take you 9 hours, 26 minutes, and 15 seconds to swim the distance from Dover to Calais.

2. The Formula Rossa roller coaster goes way, way fast.

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Clocking up to 150 mph, the Formula Rossa roller coaster is the fastest roller coaster. Not quite as fast the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, but you still have to wear goggles while taking the ride!

3. The cheetah is definitely the world’s fastest land mammal, but not the fastest creature overall.

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The owner of that title is a species of mite called the paratarsotomus macropalpis. This seed-sized creature travels at 322 body lengths per second (a measure of speed that shows how fast an animal moves relative to its size). For a human being, that’d be like running 1,300 miles an hour.

4. The fastest spin on ice skates twirled at dizzying speeds.

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Polish-Canadian ice-skater Olivia Oliver holds the world record for the fastest spin on ice skates. Twirling at 342 RPM, Olivia broke the record in 2015 to raise money for charity. If you cycled on an average-sized bike at this speed for an hour, you'd cover a distance just under 30 miles.

5. Japan is home to one of the world's fastest trains. / Via

Powered by superconducting magnets, the Japanese JR-Maglev MLX01 train travels at a mind-blowing top speed of 372.823mph. Best of all, you can ride it for free...but only if you’re a member of the Japanese government or a resident of Japan’s Yamanashi Prefecture.

6. The world's fastest lawnmower can do your garden in record time.

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Need to do a quick spot of gardening? The Viking T6 lawnmower can cut grass at a record speed of 133.57mph. Strap yourself into this souped-up weed-whacker, and you could mow an area the circumference of Regent's Park in 1 minute and 15 seconds.

7. Fancy heading off to New York, but can't stand long-haul flights? A new concept jet might be the answer to your problems.

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Using a powerful magnetic field to accelerate at incredible speeds before taking off, the four-winged scramjet would be able to reach Mach 10 speed, which is 10 times the speed of sound. Unfortunately, this experimental jet is unlikely to ever actually be built.

8. Speaking of planes, have you ever wondered how fast you could fly around the world? / Getty Images / Via

Back in 2010, a team of pilots had the same idea and set out to beat the previous world record of 67 hours and 1 minute. The intrepid group had a few hiccups along the way (including a volcanic eruption in Iceland) but managed to complete their nearly 23,000-mile journey in 57 hours and 54 minutes, smashing previous records in their aircraft's weight class.

9. The star-nosed mole is the world's fastest eater.

Flickr / Hillbraith / / Via Flickr: hillbraith

Known to gobble down an insect or a worm in just a quarter of a second, the star-nosed mole is a notoriously speedy eater. This odd-looking creature has over 100,000 nerve fibers located in its star-shaped nose, allowing it to hunt in the soil as quickly as possible.

Aviva is sponsoring Road Safety Week 2017. To find out more about their mission to make Britain’s Roads Safer and to make the Brake Pledge, click here.