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Damaged solar car expected to race

Swissipirit should be able to take part in the World Solar Challenge despite being badly damaged travelling to Australia.

Switzerland's entry in the 3,000km race, the world's toughest test for solar cars, incurred serious damage to the front wheel, engine and steering system in transit, but the team has done its best to fix it.

The World Solar Challenge starts on Sunday, and the Swisspirit team was on Friday given another 24 hours until the technical check. The race lasts around a week.

Swisspirit driver Simon Röösli has been waiting since 2006 to be able to climb aboard the new solar car and speed from Darwin in the north to Adelaide in the south.

The race, which takes place every two years and first began in 1987, is a tradition for the Swiss. The solar cars - designed by the Bern University of Applied Sciences in Biel - have regularly finished among the leaders and even won with Spirit of Biel II in 1990.

The latest Swisspirit is the brainchild of WSCO7, a non-profit organisation based in La Neuveville on Lake Biel. Its aim is to foster research, development and the spread of new technologies for people and their environment. and agencies