UTSA formula racing team to participate in international competition

formula car

UTSA formula car Roadrunner Racing

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(June 13, 2013) -- Roadrunner Racing, the UTSA Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) formula team will take its hand-built, formula-style racecar to Lincoln, Neb., to compete against 79 teams from around the world in the 2013 Formula SAE West competition June 19-22.

The 15 engineering students on the team have spent countless hours researching, designing, building and testing a car not only for speed, but also for cost, manufacturability and design.

The result is a small, formula-style racecar made of steel, fiberglass, sheet metal and carbon fiber that has a Formula One suspension system and is expected to top 55 miles per hour on the racetrack.

"All of our team members have devoted a tremendous amount of time all year long outside of class on the car," said Storm Graybill, mechanical engineering junior and the team's acting vice president of business. "Being a part of SAE is a great educational tool, and the excitement of seeing our ideas come to fruition keeps us motivated. This year's car is, in my opinion, a marvel in engineering compared to years past. It's the most advanced and has the most features I have seen or heard of being implemented on a car here at UTSA. I'm excited to see how we do at the competition."

Formula SAE is an international collegiate design competition that challenges students to conceive, design, fabricate and race a small formula-style racecar. The cars are judged in both static and dynamic events. Scoring is dependent on handling, performance, braking, endurance, manufacturability, the design decision-making process, cost and market strategy.

"Aside from competing in a world-class competition, our students are gaining incredibly valuable experience working on a team-oriented engineering project that challenges them to use their skills and innovation to create a real, competitive racecar," said Brent Nowak, the team's faculty sponsor and mechanical engineering professor.

Roadrunner Racing is sponsored by Alamo Cycle-Plex, Ed Baron, The Boeing Company, The Brake Man, Calspan, Cold Fire Signs, Dassault Systemes SolidWorks Corp., DIYAutoTune.com, Gates Machine & Fabrication Inc., Houston Bearing & Supply, Instruments Technology Machinery (ITM), Mittler Bros. Machine & Tool, Synergeering Group, UTSA BruteSquad, Valero, Denny and Suzanne Ware, and Zachry Engineering.

Other Texas teams competing at Formula SAE West include: Texas A&M-College Station, UT Austin, UT Arlington and University of North Texas.