Sunday, April 30, 2006
By ADAM LAPIERRE
News staff writer
April 12, 2006
With the whoosh of rubber tires on wet pavement drowned to a whisper by the pounding of rain on everything under the clouds, Saturday morning’s electrathon race in Cascade Locks brought 27 racers into some of the worst spring weather the Gorge can dish out.
Although electric car components don’t mind the rain, drivers’ seats are usually open-air to reduce weight and wind resistance.
Needless to say, drivers were soaked to the bone after the most-laps-in-an-hour race around the Cascade Locks Marine Park.
The winning car, designed and built by students from Willamette High School, completed 53 half-mile laps in the given hour. At 51 laps was Hood River Valley High School racer Kevin Dye, who finished fifth overall in his low-sitting three-wheeler. Also racing from Hood River were students Cory Castro and Jeff Emmerson, who finished 12th and 13th respectively.
The Hood River racers designed and built their cars in a HRVHS class called applied engineering. Electrathon specifications require all cars to use the same electric motor, which runs off of two 12-volt car batteries. Materials and designs are entirely up to individual builders.
“Despite the rain, it was a fun race,” Castro said. “We’ve been building these cars since the beginning of the year and it’s great to finally get to race them … I can’t speak for everyone but I think we all had a pretty good time even though we were completely soaked by the end of the race.”
Instructor Jeff Blackman is in charge of the program at HRVHS.
“This is the best group of kids I’ve had,” Blackman said. “The kids are really motivated and they are becoming independent with troubleshooting and improvising. My goal is to have the class be completely independent of me so they can basically fix anything that might come up at a race … This is a major project for these kids. And it’s like someone once said, ‘There’s a million ways to get it wrong and only one way to get it right.’”
The HRVHS fleet of four vehicles will race six more times this spring at Electrathon competitions in Eugene, Pasco, Longview, Mapleton and the season finale at the Portland International Raceway.
Blackman and the class are currently looking for car sponsors, which can have a business logo displayed on the sponsored car. If interested, e-mail Blackman at:
More like this story
- ‘Kindergarten Roundup’ May 1-5 for Hood River County School District
- Students ‘Make a Difference’
- Pick of the Week: Lions Follies benefit Oregon Sight and Hearing Foundation
- Farming film screening and discussion happen April 27
- Rotary Peace Pole
- YESTERYEARS: ‘Lure of Hood River Valley’ booklet available in 1927
- Letters to the Editor for April 26
- See Follies: Four strong reasons to attend a classic community event
- Entertainment Update for April 26
- ‘Midsummer’ auditions May 6-7
I Can't Keep Quiet singers at "Citizen Town Hall"
‘I can’t keep quiet,’ sing members of an impromptu choir in front of Hood River Middle School Saturday prior to the citizen town hall for questions to Rep. Greg Walden. The song addresses female empowerment generally and sexual violence implicitly, and gained prominence during the International Women’s Day events in January. The singers braved a sudden squall to finish their song and about 220 people gathered in HRMS auditorium, which will be the scene of the April 12 town hall with Rep. Greg Walden, at 3 p.m. Enlarge