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NEWS RELEASE

07-23-01

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

ISU SOLAR CAR TEAM BLAZES THROUGH SOUTHWEST U.S.

AMES, Iowa -- Iowa State University's solar car team, Team PrISUm, continued its torrid pace across the Southwestern U.S. covering almost 340 miles today, their ninth day of racing in the American Solar Challenge. The team drove its Odyssey solar car from Flagstaff, Ariz., to near Ludlow, Calif., about 55 miles southeast of Barstow.

"We had another great day," said Nick Mohr, director of Team PrISUm. "We had a plan of trying to get all the way to Barstow and we almost made it. The car operated wonderfully and the team showed a lot of poise."

Mohr said the weather was cooperating with the team, which had another day filled with sunshine. The team trekked across western Arizona and when they made the mid-day stop in Kingman, they decided to try to bring the car all the way in to Barstow.

"We were averaging about 43 mph to Kingman," Mohr said. "We figured if we kept that pace we would get real close to Barstow by 6 pm, local time. So we went for it."

The Iowa State team began the day in 18th place in the ASC. The leaders of the race, all teams that had made it to Barstow over the weekend, are University of Michigan, University of Missouri-Rolla, University of Waterloo and Queens University.

All teams must meet in Barstow, Calif., by Tuesday evening for a staged final leg of the race from Barstow to Claremont, Calif., (near Los Angeles) on Wednesday.

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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