I don’t call that direct competition as I’ve said before. That it is a finite speed you need means that you either becoming the holder or don’t, with no other placings. I get that there are sporting elements, but if you look at a wider description of sport (a dictionary can’t define it perfectly) you really need to come out with a clear winner or loser, which LSR doesn’t.
From wiki: ‘A sport is an organized, competitive, entertaining, and skillful activity requiring commitment, strategy, and fair play, in which a winner and loser can be defined by objective means.’
If someone succeeds a record attempt they are not a ‘winner,’ simply the new record-holder. If their attempt fails that does not mean they have lost, as they were never directly engaged in competition with the record-holder. And if the DO succeed, the old record holder does not become one of thousands of ‘losers,’ he simply becomes an ex-record holder/holder of a previous record. As no win or lose or even draw can be defined, it isn’t sport.
And I don’t say all of this against LSR- I am in awe of it. I simply don’t think you can call it a sport just as you can’t call setting a road car lap record around the Nurburgring a sport. An achievement. An endeavour. Even an expedition of sorts. A RECORD. But not a sport.
Edit: Just saw Damon’s post, and I agree entirely.