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Wednesay, October 22 - Day 4

Today Sungroper left the Tennant Creek control point and drove using solar power until around 2:30pm when it trailered to Aileron Roadhouse. Weather conditions have improved dramatically, and we drove today under cloudless skies, although a few continue to lurk on the horizon south of us.

Andrew has been improving the telemetry software we use to plan our day's strategy. Dennis has been offering very valuable suggestions as to possible improvements to the calculations.

Colin is fully recovered and was eager to get some more driving time in today.

We are now have our third observer, Neil Burman, (who was the observer on Mad Dog's team when they were picked up by a willy-willy and thrown into a roadsign) Today we drove the Sungroper trailer through a willy-willy.

We have now passed past the geographical centre of Australia (which would now make us Australia's most central internet Cafe), and also did a driver change at Wycliffe Wells, Australian capital of UFO sightings. Some teams even donned aluminium hats to celebrate the event.

The Sungroper Internet Cafe is now at 22.6431 degrees South 133.3450 degrees East 677m elevation. Tonight the team are watching "The Dish", courtesy of Onno and ITmaze's video projector. Conditions are also ideal for stargazing, and the telesto

Tomorrow Sungroper will drive into Alice Springs. We plan to be camping at Stuart's Well tomorrow night. Sadly Dennis will be flying out from Alice Springs to return to his work commitments, and will be greatly missed by both the Sungroper and Puerto Rican teams, where he has been of great assistance.

We will attempt to post a full list of distances covered so far tomorrow night.

Other teams ----------- The Dutch Nuna II covered 3,010 kilometres in 30 hours and 54 minutes, shaving 1 hour and 45 minutes off their 2001 record. Although they did roll one of their crew vehicles South of the Aileron Roadhouse, there were no serious injuries. (They also sported a sign on one of their support vehicles saying "We don't brake for kangaroos")

Aurora has also finished the race, having passed the end of timing at 5:07pm although will have to cross the finish line itself tomorrow morning. The MIT team (Sungroper's pit neighbours) finished 20 minutes behind them.

French team Helios suffered a broken suspension strut which they've repaired and are now back on the road again.

Heliodet is stopped 18 km North of our position and is expecting to make the Alice Springs control stop before 1pm tomorrow.

More WSC gossip will no doubt be available tomorrow when we reach the control point.

There is another WA car in the demonstration class, a biodiesel powered 4WD.

The Sungroper Internet Cafe in Tennant Creek at early dawn
Greeting the dawn's light in Tennant Creek
The support and logistics crews call in to the Devil's Marbles
Onno and Fran deal with a weighty problem
The mothership calls in to Wycliffe Well - Australia's most favoured destination for aliens.
Winston Solar Team is unaccountably missing three of its team members at Wycliffe Well. Signs of an alien visitation?
The Sungroper Internet Cafe seeks to attract some out-of-this-world customers
Waiting to trailer Sungroper to our overnight stop at Aileron Roadhouse
Sungroper arrives at the trailering point
Bernd admires one of the solar towers he designed along the Stuart Highway
Another seemingly endless stretch of highway through the Red Centre
Another productive evening charge commences
Setting up the Sungroper Internet Cafe
Bevan updates the website at the Sungroper Internet Cafe
The Sungroper Internet Cafe - Aileron Roadhouse is in session close to the geographic centre of Australia
The Sungroper Outback Cinema screens for the first time...
... and the Sungroper Observatory probes the depths of the universe.
Sungroper Internet Cafe, Sungroper Outback Cinema and the Sungroper Observatory - we cater for them all.