After nearly 2,500 kilometres just 40 kilometres separate the two leading cars in the
2011 Veolia World Solar Challenge. Team Tokai from Japan are approximately 160
kilometres from Port Augusta as they prepare to make camp, with second placed
Nuon approximately 200 kilometres from Port Augusta. Team Michigan is spending
the night in Glendambo some hundred plus kilometres behind.
Team Twente from the Netherlands is in fourth place for now just south of Coober
Pedy and involved in a close competition with Ashiya from Japan (5th) and Aurora
from Australia (6th) both in Coober Pedy – with only an estimated 20 kilometres
between them. Umicore from Belgium is in 7th place, with University of NSW in 8th
place, Istanbul University in 9th place just north of the South Australian border and
making up the top ten is Stanford University team.
All 37 teams are still participating in the race which now spans more than 1260
kilometres from the rear of the field in Ti Tree to the leaders. The top eight teams are
all within the South Australian border. Australia’s third team from TAFE SA reached
Alice Springs this afternoon at 4.40pm.
The Philippines team who suffered battery problems late yesterday were able to
repair their car SIKAT II in Tennant Creek yesterday and have travelled today on solar
power – they are optimistic they will still be able to reach Adelaide.
The stage is set for an exciting finish which could come down to the wire. The first
teams are expected in Adelaide tomorrow afternoon at the finish of timing near the
corner of St Kilda Road and Port Wakefield Road in Angle Vale and then at the
Ceremonial Finish and celebrations at Victoria Square.