LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., June 29, 1999 -- Seconds are crucial in any race and the New Mexico Tech Solar Racing Team will now surely attest to that fact after crossing the finish line at Epcot this afternoon and ending up in 28th place overall in Sunrayce 99, just 26 seconds behind their nearest competitor, the University of Virginia.
New Mexico Tech's Corona finished up Sunrayce 99 today under its own sunshine-provided power on the 85-mile-long last leg from Ocala, Fla. to Epcot at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Corona made the run just under the maximum allotted six hours, averaging about 14 miles per hour on the route and finishing 26th for the day.
The University of Missouri at Rolla held on to the lead it established since Day Two of the ten-day road rally and won Sunrayce 99 with a total elapsed time of 56 hours, 16 minutes, and 44 seconds, averaging just over 25 miles per hour for the 1,300-mile-long solar-powered odyssey.
Teams from colleges and universities throughout North America, including New Mexico Tech, raced through five Eastern Seaboard states, from Washington, D.C., toward this afternoon's finish at Epcot at Walt Disney World Resort, just south of Orlando, Fla.
The biennial solar-car race was developed by General Motors and the U. S. Department of Energy in 1990 to promote educational excellence in mathematics, science, and engineering by offering students a unique and highly valuable "hands-on" educational opportunity. Electronic Data Systems Corp. (EDS) joined GM and the DOE as a co-sponsor of Sunrayce in 1993.