Today was another day of preparation at Victorville, CA. When we arrived at the pit area, there was a definite cloud of smoke over the entire region. Although the fires were many miles away, a smoke alert was in force. Anyone who experienced breathing problems would be taken out of the region. Thankfully, by late afternoon, things had cleared up a lot. Several more team members arrived today. DARPA has pushed back the start of the qualification rounds by half a day. Evidently some of the teams had trouble getting here because of the California wildfires.
We had our first practice run at noon. The practice areas are quite large this time and there is ample room to try some real maneuvers. Each participating team gets a practice slot. Additional slots are provided tomorrow, by request. Many of our friends arrived today including Lotus Engineering, Northop Grumman, Comtrol and SICK. It’s great to see everyone again. Thank you for all your support! Oh, and PCMedEvac, everyone signed your banner today, includng the Lone Wolf. Watch for pictures.
The Lone Wolf is a very popular car. Since it is the only sports car in the race, almost everyone stops to admire the shiny Lotus. There were many press and DARPA folks through our pit area today, including Dr. Tether, the head of DARPA. He stopped for a photo opportunity. At the end of the day, there was a welcome meeting where we received more information about the competition.
Tonight we dined with our Lotus friends at Rosarita’s, except for the software team who went back to the hotel validate some things. Tomorrow morning we leave at 5:30am. The Opening Ceremony starts at 7am sharp.
Pictures may be found by Clicking Here
The Lone Wolf and several team members arrived in Victorville, CA today to register for the National Qualification Event. Steve and Jerry drove the Lone Wolf all the way from Raleigh, NC to Victorville. Check out the pictures of their trip at http://www.insightracing.org/images/Jerry10-24-2007/index.htm. Upon arrival, we set up our work area and unpacked the car under the watchful eye of several reporter’s cameras. Not all the teams are here yet, but we have pictures on our site showing those who are at http://www.insightracing.org/images/October252007NQE/index.htm.
From the NQE site, we can see a brush fire in the distance and all its smoke. It doesn’t appear to be a concern to the race participants at this time. The winds have reportedly died down a bit and we hope they stay that way.
On Thursday, we will have a visit from the DARPA director in the morning and a practice round in the afternoon. The opening ceremony is Friday morning and all the cars will be on display then. We should get some cool pictures at that time.
Friday afternoon starts the actual National Qualification Event runs. Our first run is scheduled for Saturday morning.
We’ll keep you posted here as things progress with both a report and pictures every day. Please stop back!