Although it is very well possible to cross both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans by sustainable means, the cost of the winning strategy is enormous. It would require an America’s Cup boat or a Volvo Ocean Race boat, as these are currently the fastest non-combustion engine options. Sadly, these boats come at an extreme cost, so we’ve decided to leave these crossings out of the race for the first edition of 80 Day Race. I hope that in a few years’ time we are able to include these crossings at a reasonable price tag.
We as organisation will facilitate the vehicle transport from one continent to the other.
Having said that, the race is open to all modalities of vehicles; land, water or air. In some cases it might be an option for a team to use a vessel instead of a land based vehicle. E.g. India to China is a leg where you have a few options, a very difficult over land option via the Himalayas or through Myanmar, but also over water via Colcotta and then sailing to e.g. Hong Kong. The race rules allow it, as long as the teams make it from one host city to the other, without using combustion engines and without non-renewable fuels.
Its 24,855 miles over 80 days, so averaging 311 miles a day. The organizers are attempting to drum up some enthusiasm for the race, but at the moment, have only one entry, a group of young engineers working on an electric motorcycle. It appears that funding the race, including the media team following the racers on the road, will come from selling rebroadcast rights as reality TV. For the moment, nothing but questions.... we don’t allow combustion engines (in- or external combustion), but all other technology is allowed. So fuel cells, battery electric or a combination of both. Also, solar panel supported battery electric vehicles or any other contraption you can think of. Even electric planes or blimps (http://www.solarship.com) would be allowed...
... So to clarify, a jet on biofuels isn’t allowed as that is an external combustion engine. Neither is an old Mercedes on used cooking oil, as that is an internal combustion engine...
... The race provides perfect opportunities for companies to show their pioneering spirit and their effort to achieve a sustainable future. Since the race is fully televised, the possibilities for brands to carry their message around the globe are unprecedented.
I made some suggestions to the 80dr organizers on how they could make this race much more interesting by including both vehicle AND renewable energy. The real challenge is the design of a long-distance electric vehicle capable of using just ambient energy - solar & wind. Make it about just the vehicle, without the renewable energy piece alluded to on the web site, and it gets boring. So what, I can plug in my vehicle. But get around the world on just ambient energy - now there's something really interesting.80dr wrote:We designed the race to show what sustainable vehicles can do. Not to show that the infrastructure is still dirty. So while I dislike the fact that people can charge vehicles via an outlet, a generator or hydrogen from cracked natural gas, there is nothing we do to prevent it. To be honest, we would have no means to verify the origins of all these sources.
To your other point, I don’t expect Tesla to invest in a (solar) charging infrastructure along the route. And even if they would, there would still be an option for competition, as another team might do battery swapping along the same route or have hydrogen tanks waiting for them.
A Nissan Leaf with an extended battery pack is actually more energy efficient than a Tesla and could still easily win. The same goes for the bespoke vehicles that are developed by the various teams.
And my reply: Long shot is if you do it right, It'd be interesting enough for a lot of ES-forum members to want to consider, including myself. Not, then I'll watch some, but forget about participating in any way. Your web site was initially encouraging, up until I asked this question. Too bad you guys want to make this easy & boring rather than challenging and interesting. So what you have is just an endurance run, coming down the team of drivers. And how much money you've got, so you can have a swap in battery every 200 miles or so, and getting that heavy product & people where they need to be.80dr wrote:We’ve had discussions with different partners about being able to monitor energy usage. It is extremely difficult to correctly monitor the usage due to the diversity of technologies in the race. Our experts couldn’t agree on a fool proof mechanism to do that.
I’m not sure if you know but there was a race, organized by one of our ambassadors Louis Palmer, called the Zero Race, that had a hybrid scoring system. It was very difficult to see who was winning and why. In hindsight Louis’ view this wasn’t the best way to approach it. It is easier for the public to judge a team being 4 hours behind is closer than a team 3 days behind. It’s more transparent.
Broadcasters are a special ‘breed’, so we need to invest a lot of time with them, and most of them have very clear ideas on what it is they want to broadcast. What we think is a great idea, doesn’t always resonate with them.
Sorry to hear you think it will be boring and easy.
I’m not sure how much experience you have with overland travel, but from experience I can tell you it will be anything but boring and easy. Especially with new technology.
We know we can’t satisfy everyone with our approach and I’m sorry you aren’t happy with what you see. We believe we have an interesting race and have accumulated loads of interest from ambassadors and potential teams, so we must be doing something right.
I agree that in an ideal world we would be able to include the source of the energy, but for now it is practically impossible to do that.
Race around the world in 80 days with sustainable mobility
80 Day Race | http://www.80dr.com |