A few pics from "Race 2 the Future"
August 18, 2007

not officially associated with "Race 2 the Future"

I didn't know that Utah has an environmental license plate, "Clean Fuel Clean Air." Neat! This is much better than the ugly stickers some states put on their green cars. The license number was blanked out to protect privacy. I'll have to see if I can get one for my car once it is running.

Brent from http://www.savethesaltflats.com/ had his "Tribrid" on display. This is one of the few cases where the tow vehicle is even more interesting than the race car being towed! Note it can get fuel from solar panels, a windmill (showing just 2 of its 3 blades), or gasoline. It can run on just electricity. This was the first hybrid to ever run on the Salt Flats (no, it wasn't Toyota!). It might look like an ecocommuter, but the roll bar inside (not visible) shows it is a race car at heart.

Here is a closer look at the solar panels:

Brent was the pioneer that got the NHRA to accept electricity for Junior Dragsters. Now he plans to run his electric dragster on the Salt Flats. Note how narrow the wheels are -- narrower wheels are faster for the high speeds encountered on the Salt Flats. The green box that says "96+ VOLTS" is the controller; it works like a giant dimmer switch to regulate power to the motor. The motor is the silver and black cylinder below and right of the controller. If the rear wheels stuck out past all the bodywork, this would be a classic "Lakester" configuration for a Salt Flats racer.

A new Zenn (Zero Emission No Noise) was on display and for sale. It is a "neighborhood electric vehicle." This means a top speed of 25 mph, but is cheap to buy and very cheap to run. It has 12 Volt batteries, 2 under the hood and 4 in back. Note the window sticker says 245 miles per gallon! Since the car doesn't burn gasoline, a computation is done to figure this number. It is available with air conditioning. No pictures, there was also a GEM on display and for sale.

Here is an older Chevrolet truck powered by natural gas. Nice to see being green can look so good!

Here is a classic Salt Flats race car. Salt Flats racing has many classes for older cars. Note the wheels are narrow, and have smooth hubcaps. The front grill openings are blocked off. These measures help reduce aerodynamic drag. The bars on the windows help strengthen the windows. Below the parachute is a push bar, that allows the car to get pushed by a truck to help get started on its run, and to get pushed off the course. They are hard to see, but there are little roof rails, required for cars that go over 200 mph.