Sweepstakes 2009: Yes, there is a person in there – and Holy &!^@ did she go fast!
It was another record breaking year, something no one might have expected after last year’s impossibly fast times. The men’s and women’s course records (2:04.35 and 2:28.84) were shattered after only a year, replaced by SDC’s new times of 2:03.3 and 2:25.6.
Members of the Buggy Alumni Association will receive a special post-raceday wrapup email in the coming week. It will feature more facts and figures, observations from the hills, and a team by team analysis of performance this year. You can join today by visiting cmubuggy.org/Join. Until then, here are some highlights:
* It is the lowest First Day place for PiKA since 1969…they did get 3rd this year and in 2004 they were 4th after day 1…also 3rd in 1997 and 1989…the last time PiKA had a lower final place was 1985 due to the dqs. (thanks Revo)
* Fringe put on a great 40th anniversary show for their returning alumni, just edging out PiKA to take 2nd on the last roll of the day for a new team record 2:07.25.
* SigEp men’s A sliced 6 seconds off last year’s time, coming in with a 2:08:61, a time that would have won four of the last ten Sweepstakes. The SigEp women’s team got a trophy for the first time with third place.
* AEPi posted an 11th place finish, their best ever, separated from a spot in the finals by only 3 seconds.
* Beta was DQ’d and then banned from participating in buggy until fall of 2010 due to fire safety violations (5 gallons of flammable fluid were found in the Beta truck.)
* CIA produced their first new buggy in nine five years, named Renaissance. It’s a radical departure from their traditional style of building, yet they still somehow made it look like a CIA buggy – including a windshield that is several inches longer on the left side than it is on the right, for “passing on the inside.”
* Due to a change in the conditions for winning the Spirit of Buggy award, exhibition heats were one of the highlights of Saturday morning. Anyone who went back to the old school practice of switching wheels at the bottom of hill 3 would be considered for the award, so Pioneers, KDR, AEPi, and CIA all made the switch after the chute. AEPi had an entire F1-style pit crew working on the buggy, complete with a gas can, a foot massage, and a lollipop-sign guy. Pioneers won the award on their driver’s performance – she actually got out of the buggy, pulled the replacement wheel out of the buggy, replaced it herself, and then got back in to drove the rest of the race.
* Despite winning the Spirit of Buggy award, this might be Pioneers’ last year. There are currently no members of Pioneers planning on returning next year. There is some word on the street that KapSig might be in line to race their buggies.
For more highlights from the weekend, check out the Tartan’s Sweepstakes coverage. We’ll excuse the minor inaccuracies since they were awfully quick to go to press with this story. Also, it’s pretty obvious the author took buggy descriptions from our Raceday Guide that has unpainted buggies from before Truck Weekend. We’ll take that as a compliment!
Also view a video of AEPi’s pit stop.