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News Archive 2001 - 2010

UTA Racing Team Wins Student Competition in Japan

September 7, 2004

The University of Texas at Arlington’s Formula SAE racing team took first place in the first international competition in Japan for student designed, built and raced cars. The three-day competition featured 25 teams from Japanese universities, plus one team each from Leeds University in the United Kingdom, Yeungnum University in Korea and UTA.

Scoring for the event was based on several factors. In the static category, cars were evaluated for technical and safety aspects, design, cost and manufacturing analysis, plus the oral presentation of information by team members. In the dynamic category, cars were judged for acceleration, handling on a skid pad, endurance, fuel economy and performance through an autocross course. The UTA team earned 832.5 points; the second place team earned 680.1 points.

Faculty advisor Dr. Bob Woods, a professor of mechanical engineering, was ecstatic. “We placed first in design, first in autocross, first in endurance and first overall,” Woods exclaimed. “We won countless other awards; it was almost embarrassing. One award was presented by the Japanese Minister for Industry.”

“We were so fast on the track, everyone just about fainted,” Woods continued. “There was another school that came within three seconds of us, which impressed me in itself.”

Woods reported that students from every university, usually the whole team, spent about 30 minutes inspecting and photographing the UTA car. UTA’s entries in Formula SAE competitions usually have the most advanced design features and are popular attractions at events in the U.S. “Even though we took a trophy away from a Japanese team by being there, I think that they really benefited by seeing our car, our technology and our driving,” said Woods. “We were good ambassadors for the university and for FSAE.”

The team will tour Nissan Technical Center tomorrow, and Dr. Woods is scheduled to give the opening speech at a symposium on Saturday. Following their return to UTA, they will leave September 15 for a Sports Car Club of America national event in Kansas.

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