Challenge: blog #4
Due to the strong winds and cloudy weather forecast, our strategy decided to drive 50kph till our next control stop Coober Pedy. On our way, we saw the solar teams of Twente and Aachen standing on the side of the road, with the whole convoy and tents above their solar cars; it was clear that their crashes, caused by gusts of wind, were serious. Fortunately, none of the drivers got hurt! Although a very hard way of moving forward, we were now officially on the provisional fifth position of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge.
At Coober Pedy, we were joined by Kogakuin, who managed to recover from their previous crash, a few minutes after our arrival. After the obligatory wait of 30 minutes, it was Vincent’s turn to drive Green Lightning to the next control stop: Glendambo.
Since the clouds were spare and we made use of the four-wheel steering, we picked up on speed. It was in these moments that we realized how efficient the four-wheel steering was and how much energy it saved us. As example: we used the same amount of energy when we drive 90kph with four-wheel steering than when we drive 70kph without four-wheel steering!
The time till Glendambo passed fast and only a few hours later we were driving into the control stop. After Kevin jumped into the solar car again, we had 40 more minutes to gain some more kilometers between us and the sixth position; at 5.04pm, we set camp in the middle of nowhere.
Although the last days have been very challenging and tiring, we were motivated by the great outcome of the day: 562 driven kilometers (more than anticipated), fifth position and only 537 kilometers till the finish line in Adelaide! With the better weather the next day and less wind, we expect to arrive in Adelaide in the afternoon of the fifth race day!
The next morning was full of laughter, loud music, dancing and great atmosphere; it is also the last morning we will experience in the Outback. Our energy bar filled up over night and we are determined to close the gap between us and the fourth position. Next stop: Port Augusta, the last control stop before Adelaide!
How will the rest of the last race day go? Find it out tomorrow in our last blog about our experience in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge, and make sure to follow us on our socials!