Montana State University

Student-built race car back from competition

June 28, 2010 -- MSU News Service

Members of the Bobcat Motorsports Race Team at the 2010 Formula SAE competition in Fontana, Calif. Front Row: Rusty Wolanski, Erik Dayvie (in car). Standing left to right: Faculty Advisor Robb Larson, Thomas Hoiland, Bryan Kelly, Aaron Suderman, Dan Nietzling, Eric Hogue, Reid Prison, Drew Popa, Ty Clemens, Jake Mindt, Ryan Geiger, Steven Anderson, Jeremy Hauge, Morgan Bills. Not shown - Brandon Crane. Photo courtesy of Bobcat Motorsports Race Team.    High-Res Available

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MSU News Service
Tel: (406) 994-4571
Bozeman -- A race car built by Montana State University engineering students recently competed in the 2010 Formula SAE Competition in Fontana, Calif.

Formula SAE is a student engineering design competition organized by SAE International, formerly the Society of Automotive Engineers. The Bobcat Motorsports Race Team raced its car against 79 other university teams from nine countries June 16-19.

During the past year, dozens of MSU students worked on the low-slung race car, a smaller scale version of the formula 1 race cars popular in Europe and overseas. Each student team designed, built and tested a prototype based on rules whose purpose was to ensure safety and promote innovative engineering.

"Formula SAE is widely considered the pre-eminent student engineering competition in the world, and our MSU students once again demonstrated their ability to compete at this international level," said Robb Larson, assistant professor of mechanical and industrial engineering and adviser to the MSU team.

Sixteen students went to the competition in Fontana. At the racetrack, their car was plagued with mechanical problems.

"The team fought hard and overcame most of the issues - until a broken front axle terminated their run in the final endurance event," Larson said. "In the end the team managed a respectable 46th place finish overall based on strong scores in the other required elements of the competition. This was despite not finishing in three of the four dynamic events. I am extremely proud of what these students accomplished."

Click here to see pictures of the Bobcat Motorsports Race Team.

Related articles:
MSU students experience the adrenaline of learning while building racecar, July 31, 2006

Contact: Robb Larson, 994-6420,