Live Blogging from the Formula Sun Grand Prix: Day 3

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4:50 PM
We’re about to complete the FSGP in 4th place with well over 200 laps! Everyone is celebrating with some excellent cake provided by Kristin’s parents. Thanks so much!

4:18 PM
Just completed our 100th lap of the day!

Current Driver: Jess
Laps Today: 100
Laps Total: 266

4:00 PM
Car is back out there and running! Our batteries and array are performing extremely well. One hour to go!

3:42 PM
I definitely just jinxed it. Car is pulling over to the side of the road after apparently tripping. Might have something to due with the aux packs, which have been giving us some trouble recently.

3:36 PM
We’ve passed Calgary and are now in fourth place! The car has gone the entire day with no problems, at least so far. Most of the team is off right now helping with the support vehicle inspection that makes sure our lead and chase vans are adequately prepared and equipped for the American Solar Challenge.

2:59 PM
Another driver change, this time Jess goes in for Kristin. This should be our last hot pit of the day. All of our drivers will then have been in the car for more than 2 hours at a time, which is something they will have to get used to when we go cross country. The latest official standings also show we’ve come within a few miles of Calgary, and may have even already passed them. It should be a nice steady cruise to the finish.

2:00 PM
A quiet but breezy day on the track. We’re happy to see the car running so well. Furthermore, we’re now within 25 laps of catching Calgary.

Current Driver: Kristin
Laps Today: 70
Laps Total: 236

1:10 PM
Calgary apparently has a short supply of tires and has decided to call it a day in order to make sure they don’t run out while going cross country. This is great news for us – fourth place is definitely in reach. A lot of teams seem to be taking it easy today as there are only 6 or 7 cars on the track.

12:26 PM
Changing drivers now – Kristin is going in for Valerie. Kristin’s family is here to watch her and the rayce. We’re always happy to have some company. The car has been running smoothly all morning, hopefully that will stay true the rest of the day.

Still no sign of Missouri or Calgary on the track. As of 11 AM (the last official standings update), the gap between us and Calgary was only about 50 llaps.

Current Driver: Kristin
Laps Today: 47
Laps Total: 213

12:04 PM
Missouri hasn’t been out on the track today because they’re working on their parking brake. This means we’re now in sole possession of fifth place. Furthermore, Calgary took their car down toward their trailer earlier in the morning. If they stay off the track the rest of the day, we might have a shot at overtaking them for fourth!

Current Driver: Valerie
Laps Today: 45
Laps Total: 211

11:14 AM
Quick hot pit to get a bee out of the car! Don’t want anything distracting (or stinging) our drivers.

10:46 AM
Western Michigan is now out on the track! Apparently they changed their mind about giving up and figured everything out. Congratulations guys! We’re still racking up the miles, although we’ll probably hot pit and change drivers in an hour or so.

Current Driver: Valerie
Laps Today: 24
Laps Total: 190

9:53 AM
Car is running smoothly and we’ve got the telemetry dish set up. Valerie has just completed her 25th lap and qualified as a driver! Our team is now fully ready for the American Solar Challenge.

8:39 AM
We’re gearing up for another windy day here at the track. Now that we’ve qualified for the ASC, our main goal for today is to make sure that we qualify our last driver, Valerie. She only needs about 15 more laps, so that shouldn’t take very long. This is also our last chance to run the car and make sure that everything is ready to go for open road raycing.

The current standings have again been updated at the ASC website. Northwestern is tied for 5th place, with exactly the same number of laps as Missouri. It should be an exiting rayce to the finish.

Current Driver: Soon to be Valerie
Laps Today: 0
Laps Total: 166

-Michael Sherer

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