We are unforunatley quickly becoming used to a certian type of day: running a relatively fast time, belmished by sporadic electrical repairs that negate our gains or more. The morning charge went off without incident, using our newly reprogrammed trackers. However, just before we lined up to start the second stage (in third position), a component on one of the light blinker boards exploded, leading to us missing our start time and stuck on the "side of the road" for a half hour while we performed the required repairs. We would have liked to run without it, but brake lights are mandated by the rules and we would have been heavily penalized.
The remainder of the morning was filled with passing the solar car teams that had just left before us. We managed to pass about 6 teams consecutively by making a single run up the left lane; it was the most solar cars we have seen on the road so far in the race. Soon after, we settled in for the long haul towards Topkea, KS. We only had to stop to change drivers, and so we made our run very quickly and were fourth to arrive at the checkpoint around 3:00PM.
Just as we were about to leave the checkpoint, we noticed that one of the power trackers was not properly working. We decided to swap it out for one of the numerous extras we had, thinking that it would be a quick fix. However, a few seconds after it was plugged in and powered up, we heard some loud 'pops' from it and saw some flashes, leading to another 20 minutes of diagnosis and repair work. During the course of the repairs, three other teams left the checkpoint ahead of us.
We ran the rest of the day just fine, and are currently stopped about 80 miles South of Omaha, NE; we charged there for the evening and then trailered to Nebraska City to stay the night.
Despite an inordinate amount of electrical problems, the team remains optimistic that we can make up time and move in to the