At the end of day one, we drove 660 kilometres and we are holding the fourth position in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge. Michigan is taking the lead, closely followed by Tokai and Delft. Especially with Tokai we were fighting for the best position for today, with many overtaking manoeuvres. Red One was driving with an average speed of 90 km/h, lying stable on the road and there were no difficulties.
Exciting first day of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge
Our solar car Red One started the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge from grid 10 in Darwin at 8.36 AM. The team’s race mentality was present directly from the start, and three teams were overtaken in the first 30 minutes.
At the second control stop in Dunmarra, the top four teams were next to each other, and fighting for the last minutes of racing day one. Our camp is in the middle of the Outback, a stone´s throw away from the other top teams. Day two will start a few minutes after 8.00 tomorrow morning.
Departure: race mentality was present from the beginning
It was early, very early in the morning. At 4.00 AM, Darwin time, our alarm went off. With the entire team, we cleaned Scout Hall Darwin and headed to the start. The start of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge is in front of the Parliament House, in the Darwin city center. Driver Coen Hartjes was sitting in Red One, feeling the adrenaline pumping through his body. He was the lucky one to drive the first part of the race.
Great public attention
There was a great public attention for the start of the race. A lot of people gathered in the Darwin city center, as well on the side of the road, the first part of the Stuart Highway, a lot of people reserved spots under the trees to cheer for the passing solar cars.
We are very positive about our successful first day of racing. The car was stable with an average speed of 90 km/h outside of Darwin. After this first day, we feel confident about winning the race
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Photos: Jérôme Wassenaar