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Nick Mohr, Team PrISUm, (515) 451-5630
Skip Derra, News Service, (515) 294-4917


AMES, Iowa -- Problems with the Iowa State solar car's suspension kept Team PrISUm from making it to Amarillo, Texas, under its own power. Amarillo was the team's targeted end point in the fifth day of the American Solar Challenge.

Team PrISUm completed about 180 miles for the day beginning in Edmond, Okla., and finishing roughly 70 miles east of Amarillo. The team trailered the remaining 70 miles and will begin tomorrow from Amarillo.

"Some of the roads were kind of bumpy and it took its toll on the car's suspension," said Nick Mohr, director of Team PrISUm. "Some of the parts of the suspension system were wearing at an accelerated rate. Some had to be replaced."

Mohr added that the ISU team still feels that it is making headway in the pack of cars, but some demanding terrain lies ahead. Once out of Texas, the solar racers will be faced with traveling across the plains, then mountains and desert of New Mexico.

"We knew the race route was going to be a challenge," Mohr said. "We feel that if we can keep the car on the road, we can continue to make up ground in the overall standings."

For official team standings go to www.formulasun.org/asc. To view where teams are on the race route, go to www.formulasun.org/asc/tracking/index.html. Team PrISUm also is charting its own progress and posting it on its web site, www.prisum.iastate.edu/asc/#map.

The American Solar Challenge, a 2,300-mile race is being held July 15-25. It is the longest solar car race ever attempted. The race course will follow along portions of old Route 66.

The American Solar Challenge is designed to advance renewable energy and electric vehicle technologies, promote educational and engineering excellence, encourage environmental consciousness and teach teamwork. This is the sixth major solar car race Iowa State students have participated in since 1990.


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