Another day has passed and the team has found itself in Clermont, Iowa after another solid day of driving. The road to reach it can best be described in one word: corn. From the time that we left our stage stop in Omaha, Nebraska till the time when we stopped for the day, we were surrounded by it on all sides. This gave the caravan a pleasant backdrop for the long day of driving and was a great chance for our media team to get lots of great pictures and video.
The team began morning charge well rested after spending a night at the Trinity Cathedral in Omaha. Once we took off from our stage, Quantum was quickly able to travel to the checkpoint in Ames, Iowa. As we pulled up to the Jack Trice Stadium at Iowa State University, the team was met by a cheering crowd that had gathered to watch the solar cars come in. Once the car had stopped, some members worked to impound the battery and do checks while others watched over the array and answered questions from fans. When the work on the car was finished, the team enjoyed a delicious lunch provided by Iowa State University. While we were eating, the crowd once again clapped as the University of Minnesota pulled into the checkpoint. After our hour was up, the team packed up and headed north toward the next stage in La Crosse, Wisconsin.
As 6pm approached, we decided to pull off and stop for the day. While evening charge was starting and camp was being set up, we made a terrible realization. For the last few days, the refrigerators and freezers in our trailer were not receiving adequate power, but today they stopped working altogether. As soon as the trailer door was opened, the smell of rotting meat wafted out and we knew that there would be no chicken for dinner. Fortunately, Furqan Nazeeri, an alumnus of the team who had joined us on the race, generously bought pizza for the entire team.
Looking ahead, the team hopes to continue its lead into La Crosse. It will be our final stop before the finish line in St. Paul, Minnesota. While we are all very excited to be in first place, we know that the race is not won yet. With one final push, we hope to be victors once again.