Katy Prairie Segment of the Grand Parkway Doesn’t Even Open Until This Weekend, but They’re Already Breaking the Speed Limit on It

How long will it take a Katy worker to zoom past acres of newly paved prairie, over a now-uprooted prehistoric burial ground, and under EZ Tag toll sensors on a lunchtime jaunt to the outlet mall in Cypress? Maybe as quickly as 5 minutes, if the 200mph speed reached last week by driver John Hennessey in one of his company’s souped-up Corvettes on the 15-mile stretch of the Grand Parkway between I-10 and Hwy. 290 can be maintained. Of course, that might become a little more difficult once the new Prairie Tollway opens to slower-moving traffic for the first time this coming Saturday.


Aerial View of New Grand Parkway Segment E, Texas Hwy. 99 Between I-10 and Hwy. 290, Katy, Texas

A state trooper was on hand last Wednesday to clock Hennessey Performance’s customized 2014 C7 Corvette Stingray doing 200.6 mph — a record for the vehicle — on the freshly poured but cleared track. (The muscle-car company has its headquarters on the I-10 frontage road in Sealy, a mere 33 miles west of the new Grand Parkway Segment E, also known as Texas State Hwy. 99.) 

2014 C7 Corvette Stingray on New Grand Parkway Segment E, Texas Hwy. 99 Between I-10 and Hwy. 290, Katy, Texas

A helicopter hovered above to film the event (providing some dazzling glimpses of what a soon-to-be-crowded 4-lane highway cut through uninhabited land looks like from above), and officials from TxDOT, Texas DPS, and TransCore were hanging out too — nominally to test the cash-defying overhead sensors on the EZ Tag-only toll system. Once all the stunts are over, the actual speed limit on the Grand Parkway will be 80mph.

Video and stills: Hennessey Performance

200mph from Mall to Mall

14 Comment

  • Awesome video!

  • Didn’t move over for a lit-up cop car… tsk tsk tsk…

  • I guess nothing was learned from Paul Walkers death—these dumbasses driving 200 mph on a non track is beyond stupid–all these idiots have a death wish–fine, who cares, just don’t harm others while trying to harm yourself

  • That’s awesome. Didn’t know DPS had an SRT Challenger either, too cool.

  • Common, Shannon, grow a pair, it was on a closed course with a professional driver.

  • further to the remark that actually made sense (happy Solstice, cs, and Christmas right after that)… said professional driver was also fully suited up in fireproof Nomex and wearing a helmet, and spoke very well about how stable the car was.

  • That’s about 3rd Gear for a Ferrari F430……………….

  • Third gear ? Hardly.

    @Txjazzman… Here’s what R&T says about an older version of the F430 F1 (2006 version): 1st 3.29:1 50MPH, 2nd 2.16:1 75MPH, 3rd 1.61:1 101MPH, 4th 1.27:1 128MPH, 5th 1.03:1 158MPH, 6th 0.82:1 198MPH. All above at 8500 RPM with a final drive ratio of 4.30:1.

    Beauty of it is, even with Hennessey’s build/upgrade cost, the ‘Vette is still $70K less [minimum] than the F430.

  • Great vid. Where’s the Stig? Hennessey is quickly gaining a world wide rep. and is based right here in Sealy. Shannon and her ilk beg for more government to save us from ourselves. I’ll bet she’s a real peach at a party.

  • Two comments:

    Shannon – Posting from ignorance on a public forum is a bad idea, mkay? This was a sanctioned run on a closed highway course. No one but the driver was at risk and he was in a semi-prepped car with a crash helmet and Nomex driving suit.

    As for John Hennessey… The man has a questionable reputation within the enthusiast community. His business practices, public behavior, and treatment of customers haven’t enjoyed very good press in the past. However, he’s still in business and manages to market himself well several years later, so perhaps he’s turned that negativity around.

    All that said, it was a hell of a fun video and I got a kick out of seeing the DPS Challie with her strobes going. Looked very mean!

  • I’ve seen videos of Lambos going faster on BW8… This vette isn’t shit.

  • I’m continuously tempted to give my CTS-V the Hennessey treatment..

  • what is he holding in his left hand?

  • @ senor – He’s holding a switch to freeze the GPS speedometer (attached to the dash) to preserve the speed when he clears the toll scanner.