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PPIHC 2017 - Update 5

If yesterday could be considered a successful day of testing (which it most certainly was), today was well beyond that. As a short summary: the team’s pit operations ran like a well-oiled machine, the bike performed near perfectly, and Rob was ecstatic by the end of the day.

Yesterday the team worked late into the night to make sure everything was ready for today, with most of the focus on finding the perfect suspension tuning and implementing our new, higher-rated fuse into the inverter. The suspension discussion was helped along by being able to call one of Rob’s old friends over in the UK, who has worked in suspension dynamics for decades. He and the team’s suspension expert worked out some changes to be made for today, and Rob was incredibly pleased with how everything felt on the bike. As for the new fuse, it’s safe to say there was a noticeable difference.

Even though we implemented the new fuse last night, this morning we still kept the same limits on the powertrain as yesterday to avoid the possibility of blowing the fuse or running into an issue and missing out on a full day of testing. For the first two runs up the middle section of the mountain, Rob was getting comfortable with the new suspension set-up. Once he gave the go-ahead after the second run to give him everything the powertrain could handle, we happily obliged. There was noticeable tension in the air as Rob wheeled up to the starting line and waited for the green flag, as the team has never before given the motor so much power during an event.

Once the flag dropped, though, Rob flew off the starting line and shot up the mountain. He had max power available to him for the last two runs and ended up as the sixth fastest bike up the mountain. Though everyone believes that if we had been able to fit another run in he would’ve been even closer to the top of the field, since he had only two runs to get used to the power and in those two runs shaved more than 10 seconds off the first run of the day.

Rob is feeling much happier and more confident about RW-3x, and the team is eager to see how we perform in testing tomorrow and qualifying on Friday. Less than four days until race day.

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