On the return run, flame and smoke from the afterburner blackened the white spume of salt rising high behind the Monster. Cutting in the afterburner felt "like a swift kick in the pants and everywhere else," but Arfons had his reccord—he clocked 559.179 mph on this second run. He also had two frightening mishaps. Just past the measured mile that worrisome right rear tire popped, and Arfons was on three tires and a naked rim. Then one of the two eight-foot braking parachutes ripped free. If the other had not held, Arfons would have rocketed into a dangerous off-course morass.
"The first time my tire went I was too busy to be scared," he said. "This time I managed to be scared to death." His fright soon evaporated. His thin wallet potentially fatter by $75,000 from endorsements and appearances, the scavenger king of the salt flats began scheming how he might rig the Monster to break Bonneville's 720-mph sound barrier—and wondering how he might get his hands on the Air Force's rocket-sled research for a few tips.