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« Rayce Day 7: In to Canada! | Race Updates Main | Rayce Day 9: In to Medicine Hat »

Rayce Day 8: Across Canada

We're almost there!

After a pretty laid back night in Winnipeg (even though we got lost getting to our hotel), the team was anxious to get on with the next stage of racing. We awoke to almost complete cloud cover over the city, which hampered the morning charge. Rain forced us to move the car under a canopy, negating any power we were getting from diffuse light. It affected all the other teams too, whose battery packs were already depleted from driving through rain in the Dakotas yesterday.

To make matters worse, the stage from Winnipeg to Medicine Hat is 650 miles and only two days long (it was three in NASC2005), forcing teams to average nearly 40MPH to complete the stage on time. As a result, about half the teams elected to forgo driving their solar car altogether this morning and to trailer to Brandon, which was rumored to have sun. Because of our status as one of only five teams that have not trailered yet, we elected to deal with the lackluster weather and push through, to at the very least retain our spot in the top five.

Centaurus ran smoothly all day. Once we got on to the Trans-Canadian highway, we had little to worry about, as it is mostly flat and straight. We arrived in Brandon about 1:30PM, changed drivers, and left after our mandatory half-hour stop. Then, it was back to the highway for more of the same. The weather improved, allowing us to increase our speed across Saskatchewan.

We are camped in Wolseley, SK right now, about 100km East of Regina. Iowa State (one of the teams that trailered to Brandon) is camped right next to us, which made for a more entertaining night than we normally would have had. We have heard Principia depleted their battery pack on a warped brake disc that went undiagnosed, and thus has fallen behind us. Current leader Michigan has apparently already passed through the Regina checkpoint and are on their way to Medicine Hat. FH Bochum and Waterloo are also slightly ahead of us in the stage.

Only two days left!

--David Towey
Crew Chief


Great job of toughing it out during the race day. We kept hearing reports of all the trailering of the cars due to the weather. It's good to hear that you were able to get in 300 miles. It is going to make for a long day today of almost 350 miles. Hopefully the weather will be nice to you today. Go Gophers!!!

I just watched a video that Missouri S&T has on their blog and Centaurus showed up several times... you guys look gooood!

Hope you enjoyed the cookies & chex mix ;> if some of you missed out, we'll make a huge batch when you get back!

Love, & Sunshine from all of us, have a great Rayce!

Great job on running Centaurus without trailering! I'm so proud of you all. Keep up the great work! May you have sunshine and smooth roads all day. Be well, solar car team!

The little solar car that could!! You go guys!

Rather than start a flickr account, I put the photos from Fargo on my Facebook page. Anyone should be able to access the photos from this link:
Sorry in advance if it doesn't work - I'm still learning. Sorry also to the many team members whose names I don't know!

OOOOOOH THIS IS SO EXCITING! Way to go none trailer peeps! I just looked at Jeanne's photos of the ND stop and I am so sorry I missed it. You guys and gals are so amazing. Keep it up. I think you have just today and tomorrow left. Go team go!!!

Thank you Jeanne LaMoore for all those great photos from Fargo. They certainly all have their job to do during the 30 minutes.

Team - Here's a note from a friend of mine that saw your sight for the first time yesterday... I looked at the blog website and it looks awesome. What a fun thing to do!

Jeanne - Great pictures!!! I feel like offering to do laundry for the team to give them a break when they get back, fortunately (for me), I'm sure the feeling will go away, but I'm still willing to make cookies (at your house) for the team party...

Take Canada by storm everyone, a sun storm that is!

I just talked to my son Morgan and they've been slowed down by lack of sun and strong headwinds. They have made some roadside stops to work on the electrical systems, so they will not be one of the first five teams driving in to Calgary today. However, they will most likely end the race in fifth place overall. They have not trailered the car at all and do not intend to do so. They will stay in Calgary for tomorrow's awards ceremony and start home on Thursday (I think - Morgan's not big on those kinds of details). Depending on when they roll back into the Twin Cities, I think it would be fun to have a welcome home contingent.

Solar Team, please understand how much we love you all and how hungry we have been for news of your progress! We understand that you are tired and this has been a grueling few weeks. Many of us are voraciously reading all solar blogs for any scraps of news! Wish we could be in Calgary, cheering you on. You have my respect and admiration for all you have accomplished!

Sorry to hear about the electrical issues....but the Minnesota team still has SO much to proud of. You have all worked so hard and accomplished so much! I know we are very proud of you!! Thanks for sharing your pictures Jeanne!! I finally get to see Jeff in action or sleeping!! haha.... :-) Unfortunately we were unable to join the journey and appreciate all of the updates and messages that everyone shares. WAY TO GO MINNESOTA ON A JOB WELL DONE!! Be safe coming home.

I was so hoping that your unique car design was going to beat any and all wind problems, maybe next time you can add a wind sail if it's allowed!

You are all our hero's and we can't wait for you to get back.

Here's hoping the wind blows the clouds away, to let the sun shine through on you!

I just had a phone call from Tyler. They have crossed the finish line! He said "awhile ago," so I don't know exactly when they finished. He said they were 4th in this stage and still 5th overall. Then we got cut off, so that's all I know.

GO GOPHERS!!! We are proud!

Way to go team!! Thanks to everybody who has kept the updates coming, we really appreciate it. We are so proud of the way you have handled every challenge. Drive safely on the way home!

You all are so awesome! Your helping the world develop new tech. GO GREEN!!!

You all are so awesome! Your helping the world develop new tech. GO GREEN!!!

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