Formula Car Adds to CU Engineering Experience

Formula Car Adds to CU Engineering Experience

Cedarville engineering students designed and built their own formula car for the recent Formula SAEĀ® competition in Michigan. Photo courtesy of Laura Loeser.

by Public Relations Office - Cedarville, OH

June 11, 2007

Cedarville, Ohio—Cedarville University engineering students don’t just dream it — they build it. One of their most recent creations is a formula car, designed and built by the Cedarville University Formula Team and raced in the Formula SAE® (Society of Automotive Engineers) competition at the Ford Proving Grounds in Romeo, Mich.

The contest put each car through a number of events. The Cedarville car, called “Jackets Racing,” was one of only 35 to pass the grueling endurance segment. However, a sound level failure (muffler problem) during the technical inspection led to time-eating corrections, causing the car to miss two of the events. Even with this disadvantage, the team pulled out a 70th-place finish among the 130 participating teams from around the world.

Hands-on competition experiences like this one, complete with real-life challenges like mechanical failures, help prepare Cedarville’s engineering students for successful careers. “Words cannot describe what it is like to compete in this competition. It is definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity,” said senior Michael Cimba, team co-leader. “We competed with the best of the best schools and were scrutinized by the best people in the automotive and racing industry. This project and competition ties together everything we learned in our engineering experience at Cedarville.”

As if building and racing a formula car weren’t enough, the team also got to do a photo shoot with Popular Science magazine — but not for the reason you might expect. Team advisor Jay Kinsinger, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, explained that Popular Science was enamored with “Zeek,” the motor home in which the team rode to the competition. Kinsinger described Zeek as “a 1976 Superior 26-foot motor home, complete with original 70s decor and a working eight-track player with a selection of tunes from that era.” The team and Zeek will be featured in the September issue of Popular Science, showing that engineers can have fun, too.

Learn more online about Cedarville’s engineering competition teams and its world-class engineering program or call 1-800-CEDARVILLE.