MRacing is the University of Michigan’s Formula SAE team in which students apply advanced engineering concepts and techniques to design and build formula-style cars. The team is comprised of a majority of engineering students, each specializing in different aspects of the car’s development. The team’s faculty adviser is Professor Harvey Bell. The Department of Aerospace Engineering is represented by students in the Aerodynamics division of the team as well as by the Captain of MRacing, Alex Marshalek.
MRacing recently competed in Formula SAE Michigan, which took place May 8-11 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, MI. The competition consisted of a series of tests to ensure each vehicle complied with the competition rules as well as a large number of performance tests on the track to judge each car’s capabilities. Each student team was tasked with efficiently and effectively managing vehicle research, design, manufacturing, testing, developing, marketing, and finances. MRacing competed well and placed fourth overall in the competition among close competitors such as Tu Graz, Stuttgart, ETS, Oregon State, and UAS Colburg. The fourth place finish overall was first among American teams.
In addition to the overall placement, MRacing placed first in the acceleration event, third in the endurance event, and ninth in the autocross event. Team Captain Alex Marshalek attributed some of the success to the expansion of the endurance event into the infield of the track, adding, “the track was much faster which is what our car performs best on leading to our high placement in endurance.” The team was also able to begin testing and tuning the car 18 days before the start of the competition, which increased the quality of their performance.The team’s organization and ability to set goals and objectives allowed them to prepare the car efficiently and succeed on the track.
Looking ahead, MRacing’s next competition is Formula North, which will take place May 30th to June 2nd in Barrie Ontario, Canada. Team Captain Marshalek is optimistic for the upcoming event, stating, “We are again aiming for a top finish and are hard at work preparing for it.” The team’s biggest challenge for Formula North will be tuning the car for a tighter track with less open segments than the Michigan track. Next year Marshalek and his new Technical Director Brian Weber hope to take the team overseas for the FS Australia competition. Updates on the team and live footage of their work in the Wilson center can be found on their website.