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High School Teams from across Arizona Race Solar-Powered Go-Karts of their own Design

Press Release – PDF

Students make final checks before their solar-powered go-kart is ready to race.

May 7, 2021

(Tucson, AZ) After two years of waiting, high school students from across the state participating in SARSEF’s Racing the Sun finally had their day to race the solar-powered go-karts they designed and built as teams with the help of their coaches and community mentors.

On April 24, 56 high school students gathered at Musselman Honda Circuit to evaluate their karts for safety and race. Due to the pandemic, Race Day 2020 was canceled, and so this year’s Race Day included Karts from both school years.

Nine teams from six schools competed at Race Day 2021. Teams were evaluated on the presentation of their design and build process, participation throughout the school year, and the performance of their kart during the race.

Blue Ridge High School built a maker kart with a chassis made from helicopter parts.

Students raced both standard and maker go-karts. Standard karts use a pre-fabricated steel frame chassis, while maker karts are for teams who build the kart from the ground up. At this year’s competition, Blue Ridge High School in Pinetop, AZ used the tail end of a helicopter as a lightweight chassis on their maker kart.

The Grand Champion of Racing the Sun 2021 was Salpointe High School’s Standard Kart. The Innovation Award went to Blue Ridge High School’s Maker Kart.

In the Standard Kart Division, the Efficiency Award went to Tanque Verde Solar Flares with Salpointe High School in second place. The Endurance Award went to Center for Academic Success with Tanque Verde Solar Flares in second place. The Speed Award went to Center for Academic Success with Salpointe High School in second place.

The Sal Pointe Maker Go-Kart rolls out onto the track.

In the Maker Kart Division, the Efficiency Award went to Salpointe High School with Blue Ridge High School in second place. The Endurance Award went to Shadow Ridge High School with Center for Academic Success in second place. The Speed Award went to Shadow Ridge High School with Salpointe High School in second place.

After an exciting ending to a long season, teams are already signing up to join the program for the 2021-2022 school year. For more information on how to start a team or get involved, contact SARSEF’s Chief Program Officer, Brooke Meyer, at brooke@sarsef.org.