Iowa State University


Skip Derra, News Service, (515) 294-4917


AMES, Iowa -- Iowa State University's Team PrISUm took advantage of a sunny day to compensate for low battery power and cruised across the finish line in Limon, Colo., during eighth day of Sunrayce 97. The ExCYtor car averaged 22 mph during today's leg from St. Francis, Kan., to Limon completing it in about 6 hours and 15 minutes.

Today's winning team was MIT, which covered the 140-mile leg in 2 hours, 58 minutes and 44 seconds for an average speed of 47.1 mph. The University of Waterloo was second (averaging 46.9 mph) and the Stanford University/UC Berkeley team was third (46.88 mph).

Overall, California State University, Los Angeles remains the leader in Sunrayce 97. MIT is second, about 20 minutes behind Cal State in total elapsed time and the Stanford/UC Berkeley team is third. These unofficial times and speeds do not include any penalties assessed to the teams.

Iowa State began today's leg in 27th place overall. The team found today's leg a challenge because their battery power was at a premium. But the Sun was shining for them.

"We planned to take the day slow and take advantage of the sunlight," said Beth Hunter, Team PrISUm director. "We needed to run the car on pure solar energy."

"Because it was so sunny, we were able to keep the car at around 25 mph and charge our batteries at the same time," added team member Allen Ihlefeld. "This will help when we sprint to the finish line tomorrow."

Tomorrow is the last day of Sunrayce '97 and will be from Limon to Colorado Springs, Colo., a relatively short distance of 77 miles. Traditionally, the last day of Sunrayce is a sprint to the finish line for all of the teams, after which they gather along the finish line and celebrate completing the marathon race.

Sunrayce 97 coincides with the week of the summer solstice. The 1,230-mile race began June 19 in Indianapolis and ends June 28 in Colorado Springs, Colo.

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The ISU News Service will provide daily updates on Team PrISUm to reporters covering the race. Contact Skip Derra, (515) 294-4917 or (515) 255-3422 (home).

Official race standings and times can be obtained by accessing the Sunrayce web site at

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