"It takes teamwork," Turman said. "When we have problems and get stressed and all that adrenaline gets going, they get it done and get that car out there again.
Ellison said that the students have to learn to depend on each other and listen to older team members who have experience and can teach them problem solving skills. This year, the teams divided into a boys and girls team, but all worked together for a common goal.
"We took about 15 new team members with us this year and that's a big deal," Ellison said. "We had about half and half girls and boys. Sometimes the girls kind of get pushed to the side in the technical side but this year, they had the Sundancer II car and they were going in there and getting their hands dirty. The boys were great about teaching them how to work on the car."
The Sundancer II car placed second in the Classic division after suffering mechanical issues and questionable penalty laps.
Sundancer I racked up its ninth national championship in the Open division, leaving all the competition in the dust.
Reese commended the team for their dedication to the solar racing program, both on and off the track.
"This thing doesn't start and end with a race," Reese said "It's an ongoing, year-long project."
Recognizing effort and achievement
The Houston Solar Race team will be recognized for their success at the Aug. 21 football game. Houston will host Eupora in a classic game and both solar cars will be on display at the Vocational Center for the public to view. During halftime, a recognition program for the team will be held.
Community members are encouraged to attend in support of the solar race team and program.