Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013

DAY FIVE: Nuon Solar Team wins Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013

Congratulations to the winner of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 - the Nuon Solar Team from the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands.

It was a well deserved win for the elite Challenger class team in their solar car ‘Nuna7', finally taking the title back from their arch-rivals Team Tokai - the Japanese team which has claimed victory in the last two runnings of the biennial event.

Completing the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge is a significant effort, with teams having to deal with extreme weather conditions - from high temperatures to gale force winds - while they travel some 3,000km from Darwin to Adelaide and running only on the power of the sun.

Well done to the Nuon Solar Team!

DAY FOUR: Two champion teams battle it out for line honours

A familiar scenario is being played out between two champion teams in the 2013 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge. After nearly 2,800 kilometres just 20 minutes separate the two leading cars - with the Netherlands' Nuon Solar team leading Team Tokai from Japan as they head for the finish line.

This is almost a repeat performance of what happened in 2011, except this time the order is reversed. Unless the Japanese team has something more in reserve, team Nuon look poised to take back the title they lost to Team Tokai in 2009 and in 2011.

Gale force cross winds made day four extremely challenging for teams. Unfortunately, the extreme conditions saw the University of Michigan's team forced off the road causing damage to their solar car and resulting in them drop from fifth to ninth position and faced with the prospect that they may not finish at all.

Team Twente, another team from the Netherlands, is still in third position for the elite Challenger class but will be chased to the very end by Stanford University which is less than 10km behind in fourth place.

Team Arrow, the best placed Australian Challenger class solar car is currently in seventh position coming in to the final day of racing.

Australia is being well represented in the other two classes, with the UNSW Sunswift Team leading the Cruiser class and the Aurora Vehicle Association leading the Adventure class. However, with the Cruiser class judged on design, practicality and person kilometres travelled, this puts the Netherlands' Eindhoven in a strong position as they have the capacity to carry four passengers in their four-seater ‘Stella'.

Good luck to all teams for the remainder of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013.

DAY THREE: Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 pushes teams to the limit

Day three of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 proved tough for many of the teams, as they struggled with sweltering conditions and the unpredictable nature of racing in the Australian Outback.

Lost rear wheels and a car catching on fire were just two of the dramatic events that unfolded during the day. However, the Dutch team in Nuna 7 continued their solid performance in the race to date - extending their lead over their Japanese arch-rivals Tokai University by around 17 minutes.

Goko high school's Kaito 11 Cruiser class solar car lost its rear wheels just outside of Alice Springs, leaving the team faced with a long night of repairs after a long day of racing. Further back in the race, the Turkish team's key support vehicle caught fire - potentially a race-ending event for the team if they can't replace it in time. Fortunately no one was hurt in either incident.

The Dutch are continuing their excellent performance in this year's Bridgestone World Solar Challenge, with Team Twente still in third position and on track, at this stage, to round out the elite Challenger class podium.

One of the day's highlights came from the Cruiser class, with team Eindhoven and their four-seater solar car reaching impressive speeds of up to 120 kilometres per hour - with four people in the car.

It's now looking likely that the front-runners will arrive in Adelaide on Thursday morning (October 10), having travelled some 3,000km through the power of the sun.

DAY TWO: Competition heats up in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013

Just eight kilometres separate the first and second teams in the elite Challenger class after day two of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013.

Having travelled more than 1300 kilometres on the power of the sun, Delft University's Nuon Solar Team in ‘Nuna 7' retained its lead - despite being delayed by 15 minutes because of a technical problem as well as incurring a time penalty - and camped for the night approximately 40 kilometres south of Ti Tree.

Just a few minutes back, the team from Japan's Tokai University finished second for the day, with another 1700 kilometres remaining in the race to make a move on the leaders.

Almost 80 kilometres behind their Dutch compatriots in the lead, Team Twente held onto third position, with the American team from Stanford University just 15 kilometres behind them in fourth place.
Australia's Team Arrow, which performed fastest in qualifying, is currently in seventh position.

Team Aurora, an Australian team from the Adventure class, is putting in an excellent performance and currently sits ahead of cars from the elite Challenger class - including the team from Michigan.

In the Cruiser class, the German team Hochschule Bochum in their solar car ‘Powercore SunCruiser', is currently in first place, followed by team Eindhoven from the Netherlands in the world's first solar family car ‘Stella'.

Australia's Sunswift team is in third place in their solar sports car,'eVe', just a few minutes clear of the Goko High School team and TAFE SA. 

DAY ONE: Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 gets underway

Thirty-eight solar cars took off from State Square in Darwin yesterday, Sunday October 6, as part of the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 - which sees teams from all over the world chasing the sun some 3,000km in a race to Adelaide.

Challenger Class results

After posting the fastest lap time in qualifying, Australia's Team Arrow started in pole position for the Challenger Class. They couldn't hold onto the lead, however, with the Netherlands' Nuon Solar Team finishing the day in first position - covering more than 600km for the day.

Team Twente, also from the Netherlands, finished 32km behind the leaders.

Tokai University (the team to beat, having taken the title in 2011) put in a solid performance to round out the top three - a significant result considering they started 20th on the grid following a disastrous qualifying round.

Great racing by all the teams and a fantastic start to the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013.

Bridgestone serves as title sponsor for World Solar Challenge 2013

Bridgestone has announced it will be the title sponsor of the World Solar Challenge 2013 to be held from Darwin to Adelaide from October 6-13.

The Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 will see a record 45 teams from 26 countries participate in a 3000 kilometre contest which crosses the continent using only solar energy to power the vehicles.

About the Challenge

Based on the original notion that a 1000W car would complete the journey in 50 hours, solar cars are allowed a nominal 5kW hours of stored energy, which is 10% of that theoretical figure. All other energy must come from the sun or be recovered from the kinetic energy of the vehicle.

The Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 will feature three separate classes; the ‘Adventure' Class' for pre-2013 event cars, the ‘Cruiser Class' for vehicles designed for practicality and the elite ‘Challenger Class', which compete for line honours with the fastest overall time.

Cars in the Challenger category conduct the race in a single stage from Darwin to Adelaide. Once the teams have left Darwin they must travel as far as they can until 5pm in the afternoon where they make camp in the desert wherever they happen to be. The two other classes have different requirements, but all teams must be fully self-sufficient.

The 2013 competition will be the 12th running of the event since 1987.

"Bridgestone has a global commitment to continually working toward a sustainable society and the Bridgestone World Solar Car Challenge 2013 is a natural extension of this as it encourages and promotes investment and innovation in solar technology," said Andrew Moffatt, Bridgestone Australia and New Zealand Managing Director.

"It's also a good fit because of the tremendous interest Australian motorists are now taking in technology that can lower the impact of their vehicle on the environment.

"This is reflected in the success of our Ecopia low-rolling resistance range of tyres which are continuing to grow in popularity with Australian drivers because of their fuel saving and environmental benefits," Mr Moffatt said.

Chief Executive of the South Australian Motor Sports Board Mark Warren said the Bridgestone partnership continued the high standing of the World Solar Challenge on the global stage.

"It is fitting that the naming rights for 2013 go to such a progressive company that cites within one of its corporate philosophies 'Shinshu-Dokuso' which I'm told means creative pioneering," Mr Warren said.

"In our 26 year history we too have aspired to be creative pioneers in our quest to realise the dream of the world's first truly efficient solar electric vehicle. With the support of Bridgestone this quest is one step closer to reality."

The Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 will feature three separate classes; the 'Adventure Class' for pre-2013 event cars, the 'Cruiser Class' for vehicles designed for practicality and the elite 'Challenger Class', which compete for line honours with the fastest overall time.

Bridgestone has announced it will be the title sponsor of the World Solar Challenge 2013 to be held from Darwin to Adelaide from October 6-13.

The Bridgestone World Solar Challenge 2013 will see a record 45 teams from 26 countries participate in a 3000 kilometre contest which crosses the continent using only solar energy to power the vehicles.


 

Copyright Bridgestone Australia Ltd. 2007