IMW Regretfully Declines the Zero-Emission Race Invitation

We were recently approached by Louis Palmer to represent North America in the Zero-Emissions Race around the world ( It was an amazing honor to be considered to take part in this historic race of electric vehicles across 16 countries and my initial reaction was “YES! We’ll do it! We just have to figure out how.”

Over several days, on phone calls spanning the world, Louis and I talked out the details. At home, the team worked on repairing damage done to Seven during Knockout. Jen investigated visa requirements, international drivers permits, and addresses to consulates, trying to work out how I could get everything I needed in time to travel across the world.

With such late notice, there’s no time to get enough sponsorship to finance the huge costs of this race. Jen and I talked about taking out a mortgage on the house to be able to afford my taking an unpaid leave of absence from my job and pay for my expenses in the trip.

It was this weekend, when talking with the team and getting our hands dirty fixing Seven, that I realized now is simply not the right time. Everyone is tapped out. Our participation in the X PRIZE has left us with little funds and no vacation time left. We worked so hard to get Seven ready for the X PRIZE challenge, but there’s still so much more time that needs to be spent preparing her for a long trip. Seven deserves respect. She deserves more testing and refinement.

We’ve already seen what happens when Seven feels rushed.

When Louis called today, I gave him the bad news. Illuminati Motor Works will not be participating in this year’s Zero-Emissions Race. Louis responded by inviting us to meet with the members of the race when they reach the US west cost. And, he asked if we’d be interested in racing in the next Zero-Emissions Race…in a year or two.

A year or two? Maybe we’ll be there. We’ll see what adventures IMW encounters in the meantime.

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