News Service


Allen Ihlefeld, Team PrISUm, (515) 231-0363
Skip Derra, News Service, (515) 294-4917


AMES, Iowa -- Iowa State University's solar car finished the second day of racing in fifth place, despite heavy clouds which prevented all but two cars from making the finish line under their own power.

ISU' s Team PrISUm members made it to within 12 miles of the Sunrayce 99 finish line before deciding to trailer their PrISUm Phoenix solar car to the overnight stop in Raleigh, N.C. The team will be penalized 1.5 minutes for each mile it trailered its car in. This is in addition to the 8 hours allotted for each day of racing.

Iowa State began the day in 15th place overall. Official times and standings after two days of Sunrayce 99 can be obtained by accessing the Sunrayce Web site .

Each of the 29 cars in Sunrayce 99 faced the daunting task of traveling hilly terrain in cloudy conditions while trying to complete the 198-mile course from Charlottesville, Va., to Raleigh, N.C. Only two teams managed to cross the finish line under their own power. The University of Missouri-Rolla completed the course unofficially in 7:50:45 with an average speed of 25.24 mph and Queens University did it in 7:59:19 (average speed 24.79 mph).

"Our target speed was 26 mph today. We felt that if we kept the car at about that speed, we could complete the route in eight hours," said Team PrISUm Director Allen Ihlefeld. "We kept it at 26 mph for as long as we could, but we saw sun for only about five minutes. The clouds affected all of the teams today."

Tomorrow's leg of Sunrayce 99 will be 180 miles from Raleigh to Charlotte, N.C. Charlotte is the "adopted hometown" of the Iowa State solar car team.

Sunrayce 99 coincides with the week of the summer solstice. The 1,424-mile race began June 20 in Washington, D.C., and ends June 29 in Orlando, Fla.

Sunrayce is an ongoing educational program that culminates in a biennial cross-country race of solar-powered cars. The program is open to colleges, universities, trade schools and other post-secondary educational institutions.

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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). Updates can also be accessed on Today's News.

Official race standings and times | ISU Team PrISUm Web site

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Revised 6/22/99