The epic 3032km Bridgestone World Solar Challenge is over. Belgian Solar Team Agoria was the first to cross line in 34 hours, 52 minutes and 42 seconds. The epic Darwin to Adelaide journey has seen plenty of drama, from high winds, vehicles being blown off the road, sandstorms and even in the case of Vattenfall Solar Team’s Nuna X, a fire!
That poor team was just 263 kilometres short of the Victoria Square finish line. After that heartbreak Team Agoria’s ‘BluePoint’ was thrust into the lead.
BluePoint is designed to ‘sail on the wind’ which was handy given the conditions. Japan’s Tokai Challenger claimed second place with a time of 35 hours, 4 minutes followed by US team Michigan in Electrum in 3rd place with 37 hours, 56 minutes. Keep in mind the teams stop at night, obviously.
The Cruiser Class category will see teams trickle over the line from tomorrow.
South Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, David Ridgway said,
“Total credit to the great work by team Agoria and congratulations to them all for being first across the line today,”
“To cross the line first, after a gruelling 3000 kilometres across the desert, is a terrific reward for what the team puts into this event – I’m sure there are hundreds of hours of work and training, plus lots of blood, sweat and tears behind this win, so I’m sure the team, their families and supporters will enjoy a big celebration tonight.”
Northern Territory Minister for Tourism, Sport and Culture Lauren Moss added, “It’s fantastic to see this event grow in size and popularity over the years, with more and more people from across Australia and the globe taking on the challenge of creating the world’s most efficient solar-powered vehicle,”
“The Territory Labor Government is proud to support this biennial challenge, knowing how important it is to invest in events that strengthen our local economy and pave the way for a more sustainable future.”
Veteran Event Director Chris Selwood AM congratulated Team Agoria on their magnificent achievement.
‘’This professional, innovative, and passionate team have always been strong competitors. Their hard work has paid off. They have competed in this event eight times, and they now have the ultimate reward, admittedly in dramatic circumstances.”
Well done to all involved!