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Did someone really tow an Airstream with a bicycle?

towing an Airstream with a bicycle
French bike cyclist Alfred Letourneur

Wally Byam, the founder of Airstream trailers, was well-known as a master of publicity as his shiny light-weight aluminum camper trailers became an American icon.

In 1947, Wally Byam invited the professional French cyclist Alfred Letourneur to California as part of a marketing campaign to show how light Airstream trailers were and how easy Airstreams were to tow.

Letourneur had already set a world speed record in 1941 on a bicycle, riding an astonishing 108.92 mph while drafting behind a race car with a specially designed wind faring. The French bike race had previously set the world speed record on a velodrome (cycling track) in 1938.

Byam staged the demonstration on a runway at the Metropolitan Airport in Van Nuys, California with Letourneur pulling a 22-foot Airstream around his bicycle.

Yes, someone did tow an Airstream with a bicycle!

Find out more Airstream trivia here