WMU News

Solar teams complete WMU qualifying event

July 14, 2001

Sunseeker Web site

KALAMAZOO -- Final qualifying events for the July 15-25 American Solar Challenge cross-country race wrapped up at Western Michigan University with 30 solar racecar teams heading on to Chicago for the start of the race.

Western Michigan University and the University of Michigan were the only two Michigan teams to qualify for the arduous 2,300-mile trek along historic Route 66. The race begins at 9 a.m. Sunday, July 15, in front of the North Entrance of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago and concludes 10 days later in Claremont, Calif.

For daily updates during the race, go to the Web sites for WMU News, WMU Sunseeker or the American Solar Challenge.

Listed below are the 30 cars that qualified for the American Solar Challenge in the order in which they will start the race, which was based on the number of laps completed during qualifying trails.

A total of 33 teams spent the week prior to the race on the WMU campus, participating in the WMU Formula Sun Grand Prix, the final qualifier, which involved checks for safety and roadworthiness and qualifying laps at GingerMan Speedway in South Haven, Mich.

The Formula Sun Grand Prix concluded Friday, July 13, with a kick-off banquet for the race at the WMU Bernhard Center. More than 600 race team members and dignitaries attended the banquet, which included the unveiling of the Wilson Cup, a trophy to be presented to the winner of the race and named for Howard Wilson, a retired General Motors/Hughes executive who was instrumental in bringing solar car racing to the United States.

At the banquet, 12 team awards (listed below) were presented for performance during the WMU Formula Sun Grand Prix qualifying events. The kick-off dinner concluded with the inaugural performance of "Shine on," the official ASC theme song, by Kokopelli, a band based at the University of Virginia.

WMU Formula Sun Grand Prix Awards

Best overall performance

1st place -- Principia College
2nd place -- Ecole de technologie superieure (ETS)
3rd place -- University of Toronto

Fastest figure eight (a steering event) -- Kansas State University (6.9 seconds)

Teamwork -- University of Arizona

Sportsmanship -- Western Michigan University

Stock class - most laps completed*

1st place -- Stanford University car #16 (120 laps)

2nd place -- University of Alberta (116 laps)

3rd place -- Northwestern University (108 laps)

Open class - most laps completed*

1st place -- Principia College (224 laps)

2nd place -- Ecole de technologie superieure (194 laps)

3rd place -- University of Toronto (163 laps)

*At GingerMan Racetrack's 1.88-mile road course near South Haven, Mich.

Solar Cars that qualified to participate in the American Solar Challenge are listed below in the order in which they will start the race, which was based on the number of laps completed during qualifying trails. Also shown is the car's race number and race class, either stock or open. Stanford University has two cars in the race.

1. Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology #74 (Open class)

2. Principia College #32 (Open class)

3. Stanford University #16 (Stock class)

4. University of Missouri - Rolla #42 (Open class)

5. University of Toronto #1 (Open class)

6. Ecole de technologie superieure #101 (Open class)

7. University of Arizona #8 (Stock class)

8. University of Missouri - Columbia #43 (Open class)

9. Western Michigan University #295 (Stock class)

10. University of Michigan #2 (Open class)

11. University of Virginia #87 (Open class)

12. Texas A&M University #12 (Open class)

13. Queen's University #100 (Open class)

14. North Dakota State University #22 (Stock class)

15. University of North Dakota #00 (Stock class)

16. Kansas State University #28 (Open class)

17. Northwestern University #150 (Stock class)

18. Minnesota State-Mankato and Winona State #3 (Stock class)

19. Iowa State University #9 (Open class)

20. Stanford University #91 (Open class)

21. Association FUTURA #63 (Open class)

22. University of Minnesota #35 (Open class)

23. University of Waterloo #24 (Open class)

24. Messiah College #77 (Open class)

25. Los Altos High School / La Puente Valley ROP #11 (Open class)

26. South Bank University #41 (Open class)

27. University of Alberta #99 (Stock class)

28. Massachussetts Institute of Technology #6 (Open class)

29. McMaster University #13 (Stock class)

30. University of Pennsylvania #17 (Open class)

Three teams -- Massachussetts Institute of Technology, McMaster University, and the University of Pennsylvania -- failed to complete the 125-mile minimum during qualifying trials, but were close enough to the requirement that they were permitted to compete in the American Solar Challenge. Each of those three teams will have a time penality applied to their overall race time.

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Media contact: Cheryl Roland, 616 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

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