Nearly 700 students from 38 Southland high schools competed in the
nation’s largest solar-powered boat competition
TEMECULA, Calif. & LAKE SKINNER, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#solarcup–Metropolitan Water District’s 14th annual Solar Cup™
concluded today with boats built and raced by students from Riverside
Poly High School and Kaiser High School claiming the top awards at the
competition, the largest student-based solar-powered boat race in the
The schools were among 38 teams competing from Metropolitan’s
six-county, 5,200 square-mile service area, which includes Los Angeles,
Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego and Ventura counties. Solar
Cup is a school year-long program in which students build, equip and
race 16-foot, single-seat boats powered only by the sun.
The Solar Cup program allows students to apply their skills in math,
physics, engineering and communications, while learning about Southern
California’s water resources, resource management, conservation and
alternative energy development.
Riverside Poly High School, in Riverside, won first place in the
veteran’s division, while Kaiser High School, in Fontana, took the top
prize in the rookie division at the three-day competition at
Metropolitan’s Lake Skinner in the Temecula Valley of southwestern
“This has been a great weekend where we’ve seen students at their
best—working together as teams to engineer the fastest boats they can,
putting to use the math and science skills they’ve been learning all
year, and having fun doing it,” said Randy Record, Chairman of the
Metropolitan Water District of Southern California Board of Directors.
“They’ve also gained a new and valuable appreciation of the state’s
natural resources and an understanding of how to live more sustainably.
We’re hoping many of these bright young students go on to careers in
water or resource management.”
Also at the event were Metropolitan directors Michael Camacho of the
Inland Empire Utilities Agency, David D. De Jesus of Three Valleys
Municipal Water District, John W. Murray Jr. of the city of Los Angeles,
Glen Peterson of the Las Virgenes Municipal Water District, Michael
Touhey of the Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District and Yen
C. Tu of the San Diego County Water Authority.
On Friday, teams completed a qualifying event to ensure boats met rules
and were safe and seaworthy. Saturday, the teams attached
solar-collection panels to the boats for two, 90-minute, 1.6-kilometer
Today, the solar-collection panels were removed and boats used solar
energy stored in batteries to race down a 200-meter stretch—like drag
racing on water.
The 2016 Solar Cup program began last fall when Metropolitan’s member
agencies announced their school sponsorships. Teams are sponsored by
their local water agencies and other organizations to equip the crafts
with solar panels, batteries, steering and related systems.
Metropolitan provided teams with identical kits of marine-grade plywood
to build the hull, and an advisory team from Occidental College provided
technical support for the boats’ engineering and mechanics. While all
teams must build a new boat and equip it, returning teams were allowed
to use equipment from previous boats.
Following are the trophies and awards presented today. Complete Solar
Cup scores will be posted on Metropolitan’s website, mwdh2o.com.
You can also follow @mwdh2o
on Twitter or become a fan
on Facebook to see the results from this weekend’s races and stay
abreast of other agency and industry news. Photos and video of this
year’s event are available upon request and will be posted on the
website in the coming days.
Veteran Teams, Cities, sponsoring member/local
First Place – Riverside Poly High School, Riverside, Western
Municipal Water District and Riverside Public Utilities
Hottest-looking Boat – West Covina High School, West Covina,
Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District
Rookie Division—Teams and sponsoring
First Place – Kaiser High School, Fontana, Inland Empire
Utilities Agency and Fontana Water Company
Hottest-Looking Boat – Alliance Collins Family College Ready High
School, Huntington Park, Central Basic Municipal Water District
Bart Bezyack Memorial Spirit of Solar Cup
Trophy Sportsmanship Award:
Coast High School, Huntington Beach, for assisting with moving equipment
and getting boats out of the water and picking up trash
John Muir High School, Pasadena, for loaning tools and materials
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California is a
state-established cooperative of 26 cities and water agencies serving
nearly 19 million people in six counties. The
district imports water from the Colorado River and Northern California
to supplement local supplies, and helps its members to develop increased
water conservation, recycling, storage and other resource-management
Metropolitan Water District of Southern California
(202) 821-5253, mobile
(213) 324-5213, mobile