The Mizzou Formula SAE Team rode a consistent performance to a fifth-place finish out of 24 teams at the Formula North 2018 in Ontario, Canada.
The score was based off not only the performance of the Formula SAE car of each team, but also technical and business aspects. The categories included design, cost, business, and the performances in the following areas: skidpad, acceleration, autocross, endurance and efficiency.
In aggregate, Mizzou trailed only École de technologie supérieure, the University of Michigan, Carleton University and Polytechnique Montreal.
“Our car is typically reliable,” Mizzou’s Emily Weber said. “I want to say we had a six or seven year endurance streak up until last year in Lincoln (Neb.), when we had an oil issue. The thing we pride ourselves on is the quality of our work. We do usually have a strong finish in the endurance event where usually half to two-thirds of the teams are disqualified for not being able to finish.”
The added benefit of attending competitions is the ability for teams to learn from the successes and mistakes of other teams by discussing their cars.
“A lot of competition is you going around looking at other people’s cars and asking their system design lead about the design process. … Competition is a really good learning opportunity in that respect,” Weber explained.
The Mizzou Formula SAE team builds a racecar based on the previously mentioned criteria and participates in several competitions each year. The design process for next year’s competition car already has begun. The fall usually sees the beginning of assembly, followed by testing in late winter or early spring. Then the team fine tunes the car to get it competition ready.
Weber said the team is hopeful to improve on its aerodynamics package this coming year. And the team is always looking for more members willing to put in the time to help them achieve that goal.
“It’s a really good learning opportunity, and it provides good experiences and skills you’re not going to get anywhere else,” Weber said. “If you put in the time, you’ll definitely see results.”