Team Arrow Goes Like The (Solar) Wind

If, like me, you are so enmeshed with your electronic devices that you don’t manually follow things like “dates” and “times” anymore, preferring instead to rely on your thingy to bingle when something important is about to happen, you might have accidentally missed that today is the start of the 2013 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge, from Darwin to Adelaide.

I’m excited, because our friend, Chris, is part of Team Arrow – who won pole position with their efforts in the qualifiers. You can see him featured in the BBC’s Day In Pictures for October 2nd (photo four), wearing his favourite facial expression.

The race is expected to take six days, and the competition is apparently fierce:

You can follow along via the World Solar Challenge website, or (recommended) keep up with Team Arrow on facebook and twitter. Update: and thanks A for pointing out where you can find their end-of-day position summary as well.

I asked P if he wanted to grow up to be a solar race car driver, like “Uncle” Chris this week, but he said he’d rather be a naturalist, and went back to his ExxonMobil-sponsored water bird spotting

River of Life trail, Gardens by the Bay, October 4th-November 30th.

…so we will put our hopes in T.

T driving her cardboard car. Not solar, but recycled.

Update: result was 7th place overall, first of the Australian teams. Not bad for a first try! From Chris:

It was exciting stuff – we were cruising at 75 until swift made their move and we ended up sprinting the final hour at 90 – 100kph while managing the battery that had run flat the day before. I can certainly say that running the arrow at 100 is much hairier than a lotus at 200 and turbulence off other vehicles is a menace.

At one point we were 0.04 amps of draw away from triggering a shut down from the management system. Eek.

Very satisfied right now and it’s been an epic week.