The qualifying runs were this morning. Thomas was scheduled in the first session, David in the second and Jan-Marcel in the fourth. Thomas had a good start; Frans and Jan-Marcel were in the chase car. After about 1 mile team Delft/Amsterdam was on the side of the road. They had started before us, but apparently had some malfunction of the bike. Later it turned out to be a problem with the drive chain.
Within the next mile Thomas moves to the left lane. He also appears to have some sort of problem. We overtake him quickly, park the car off the road and catch Thomas. We get him out of the bike fast, and clear the road for following competitors. Thomas was under the impression that the chain had come off. He was pedalling into thin air. When we are back at the start the chain is in its correct position on the sprocket.
David made a good qualifying run. He did not go too fast because of the fast winds. Jan-Marcel also qualifies without any problem. The windspeeds had even gone up. Thomas gets another chance to qualify in the last session. Unfortinately he has a flat tire; this time we aren't fast enough to catch him. He managed to bring the bike to an almost standstill before he toppled over, so the only damage was some superficial scratching in the paint. This has been smoothed away in the afternoon.
Jan-Marcel was the only one to run in the evening sessions. The run was okay. Not really fast, but that could not be expected because of the wind. At catch something unexpected happens. The first deceleration went well, but close to the catch area the break lever fell off the handlebar, so he could not break anymore. With an estimated speed of about 35 km/h he sped through catch. Just after catch he managed to put the lever back on the handlebar, and could decelerate again. Nobody was close enough to be able to catch him, so he fell over about 75 meters before the road block. The damage is again just some superficial scratching in the paint.
After the riders meeting (this can be followed live on ustream: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/whpsc ) we had a good meal at the Chinese restaurant. Tomorrow morning we will get up early again for Thomas' qualifying run.
Team Cygnus has developed a fully faired recumbent bicycle that can compete with the fastest recumbents in the world. The main goal is to use an optimum man-machine combination to break world records. The Cygnus team consists of technical specialists from various disciplines. Between them they have many years of experience with fully faired recumbents both in racing and in designing. All Cygnus team members are racers at the highest level. Every year they compete in national and international competitions such as Battle Mountain, the European Championship, the World Championship, and the Michigan Human Powered Speed Challenge, but they also attempt to break records on the tracks of RDW, DEKRA and Opel.