Rain, Gusts and Blown Tires

With yesterdays catastrophe of rain water and also a no sun morning team decided to charge the batteries as much as they can until 10:30. The first stage of the day was 196km from Gariep Dam to Middelburg. Two brand new tires on the front and the car was ready for a long climb.

On the first 40km’s both front tires are blown and we made a quick pitstop and changed them with new ones. After 80km’s both front tires are blown again. As we were arguing how this is happening with the warning of the solar car driver we touched the surface of the road and understand that the surface of the road has no difference than a sanding paper. As we drive further the road conditions get better. But during all tire changes and late start pushed us to go to control point around 2:30 which is 30 minute before the control stop entrance time.

Team decided not to make any loops and just start driving to control stop. The second stage of the day was 109km long. At the first 10km there was strong side winds which is making the car control very hard and then we felt a huge gust hitting the car which is approximately 65km/h. As the team members felt the fear our driver was so calm to control the car in couple of seconds which felt like couple of years for us. As the wind gets stronger the team decided to trail the car for safety reasons.

In total 823km is done in the last 3 days of the event which is 200kms more than what the team achieved with Ra25 in the last Sasol Solar Challenge event in 2014. So another record braking moment for the mighty Ra27 and Near East University Solar Racing Team.

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