The Rainhill trials, held in October 1829 to test the suitability of locomotives to run on the new Liverpool and Manchester Railway, brought a surprising entrant: Mathematician Thomas Shaw Brandreth offered Cycloped, a car powered by a horse on a treadmill.

It was no match for the other competitors, all of which were steam locomotives. Engineer George Stephenson’s Rocket won the day — and an important place in transportation history.