Day 4 at Shell Ecomarathon

The final day started at 8am with a Shell sponsored group shot of all the vehicles & participants.

Sunday was a long day with having the vehicles out on the downtown Detroit track several times, each time trying to improve on their last run.

Soon after the end of competition, the team took the traditional team shot with all 3 vehicles. Everyone packed up and headed back to campus after the awards ceremony. A five hour drive was much better than the last several years having to drive 20+ hours back to Cedarville from Houston.

Final Results:
GLII – 4th Prototype, Gasoline Category
Sting – 5th Prototype, Battery Electric Category
Ernie – did not place

Day 3 at Shell Ecomarathon

Saturday brought a flurry of activity with trying to get Sting & Urbie through inspections. Long before the inspection site was open, both vehicles were in line. After passing all their inspections, the vehicles took a few test runs around the indoor track before the outdoor track was open.

Since all of Fridays outdoor practice sessions were canceled, none of the teams were able to drive the course until competition started. Because of being unfamiliar with the course, teams & spectators saw many early crashes on the course.
Both Sting & GLII made several successful runs on the outdoor track.

Urbie continued having mechanical problems which kept the team from performing as they had hoped on Saturday.

Day 2 at Shell Ecomarathon

Friday morning we woke to high winds that forced Shell Ecomarathon to cancel all testing on the outdoor track through downtown Detroit. The Cedarville team worked hard all morning & afternoon to get their super mileage vehicles ready & pass safety inspections.

Though Cedarville’s Gold Lightning II was the only vehicle that passed all the inspections & was able to get on the indoor test track and get several test runs, both Sting & Urbie passed several inspection points. With some additional work in the evening, both vehicles should pass the rest of their inspections Saturday morning and be able to get on the outdoor track along with Cedarville’s GLII.

Day 1 at Shell Ecomarathon

Day one brought a long day but we arrived in Detroit at the Cobo Center for the Shell Ecomarathon late in the afternoon.

After unloading the 3 vehicles from the trailer to the team’s paddock we headed to dinner. After dinner, the students were required to watch a Shell safety video. Everyone gathered back at the team paddock for a quick team picture & a meeting. Minutes after the meeting, everyone went to their task to complete what was needed. Saturday morning was going to come quickly and the 3 vehicles needed to be ready to pass all 10 Shell inspections before the vehicles can get out on the track for testing. There are only limited times throughout the day on Friday that the vehicles will be permitted to be on the track for testing.

CU’s Supermileage team goes to Detroit

It was a snowy Monday drive up to Detroit with the Cedarville Engineering Supermileage team. But it was a problem-free trip and we arrived safely at the Detroit Cobo Center, where Urbie was moved into the display hall. Yes, his name is a play on Herbie the Love Bug from the old Disney movies.
The team worked on the vehicle at the Shell booth in the lower level of the convention center, while Press Week at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), also known as the Detroit Auto Show, took place on the upper levels.

Later in the afternoon, we all went to the hotel downtown, then went to dinner. We watched the first half of the College Football Playoffs championship game, Ohio State vs Oregon, at the restaurant and then headed back to the hotel. I watched the rest of the game in the hotel room with a Michigan fan. Great game!

In the morning after breakfast, the team and I took the RTA (train) to the Cobo. While the team worked on a few more details to get the vehicle ready, I walked around the NAIAS show to look at new cars. I was amazed at all the media. Since it was press week at the show, many were reporting on specific vehicles while the manufacturers unveiled their 2015 creations. It was quite a spectacle. It was not very crowded and I could walk right up to the vehicles and take all the pictures I wanted.

I returned to the Shell booth and team was instructed how the afternoon would unfold. Not until after the event did I realize how big of a deal this was having the university engineering team at the Shell Eco-marathon booth.
The governor and lieutenant governor of Michigan also came by the booth to talk to the CU team and look at Urbie, as well as Shell-sponsored IndyCar driver Will Power, who is the current IndyCar Race Series champion.

The media frenzy kicked in when the Shell-sponsored NASCAR drivers Joey Logano and Brad Keslowski visited the booth and talked with Cedarville faculty and students. I enjoyed taking pictures of Logano and Keslowski as they took a genuine interest in the vehicle and asked the team details about the car.

As part of the Shell Eco-marathon promotion, Logano & Keslowski “raced” Urbie and Shell’s own Urban Concept car on the track next to the booth. The noise level pumped up quite a bit as the NASCAR drivers took off, even though the vehicles were not going very fast. The Shell rep’s had a press conference with Logano & Keslowski. Logano stayed awhile after the event and took each member of the CU team several laps in the Shell concept car. What a great memory for everyone.

A walk around the Detroit Auto Show …

After a long day, we packed up Urbie and headed back to Cedarville. We arrived on campus super late, or super early, depending on how you look at it (early in the morning that is). We were exhausted but satisfied at how things went and how much positive exposure Cedarville received.

A short trip to NYC

It’s kind of hard to go to NYC as a photographer if you’re not going to spend a few days there walking around to the sights and taking pictures.

I had a great 38 hours in NYC but I was not there to see the sights! I went to NYC to meet up with a group of Cedarville University students doing ministry on their spring break. We spent most of our time following Google Maps walking blocks, in a NYC Subway going from one borough to another catching up with the CU team. It was cold and it rained or snowed throughout most of the time we were there.

I did not want to be that kind of photographer that would run & gun for an image. When I did see an image, I did not have a whole lot of time to compose and take the shot! I’m not complaining, I’m just saying that I either passed up a shot and or just limited myself on what I did shoot. I’ll be honest, the weather played a part in walking past several photo ops, I just did not want to stop because it was just so cold and wet, I did not want to take off my gloves!

I’ve decided that I want to go back to NYC in the summer or at least when it’s warmer and spend a few days in the city. I do have a few shots in mind that I want to get.

Here are a few shots I came away with in my short visit to NYC.

Week 2 – PAD – Project 365

Week 2 …