The McGill Racing Team recently travelled to Brooklyn, Michigan to participate in the prestigious FSAE East. Although the week had ups and downs, the experience was well worth it. Below is a recap of the week.
Tuesday May 12th:
On the day before competition began, we were lucky enough to meet up with our industry advisor from Ford Performance, who had a day of visits planned out for us. We were able to get detailed tours of the facilities and some tests tracks, among other things. We thoroughly thank Ford Performance for the effort they put in to enhance our learning experience. That afternoon, we continued our tour at Watson Racing, a Ford OEM supplier. They were very kind and provided us with a spot in their garage to work on our car. They were very generous in offering us some machine tools and some machining services on extra parts that we needed that night. Employees from Ford Performance (formerly Ford SVT) came by to chat with us and check the car out. We also had a visit from Henry Ford III, who was thoroughly impressed by the look of the car. We worked until around midnight and they took off to go to the Juniper Camp ground, next to Michigan International Speedway.
Day 1 of Competition:
In the morning, we got on site, registered, and continued working on the car. To summarize, the chassis, suspension, brakes and steering were 99% finalized. The front wing and rear wing were done, a little bit of work remained to be done on the mid-region. The powertrain and electronics made a lot of progress and were very close to the point where we could start the engine. We brought the trailer back to the camp ground to work on it through the night.
Day 2 of comp:
A good, long day, but also a bit insane. We arrived early to continue working on the car. Got in at cost at 9:30, Johnny Boy & Dan smashed it, Anna and Matt went to marketing, also went well. Kept working on the car like crazy, rolled to tech at around 12:30, passed without any major problems, and weighted the car, 352 lbs dry. Got out of tech at around 3:50, prepped for design at 4:30, also went well, we definitely felt like on the cusp of finals. No tilt, noise, or brakes. We took the car back off site, knowing we would have to re-tech, and worked at ETS’s rented house garage until 3am to finish some powertrain stuff and hopefully get the engine running. Shoutout to ETS for offering us a workspace in our time of need.
Day 3 of comp:
After working on the car until the late hours in the morning, we met in the morning before taking off to MIS. Considering the unfinished parts of the car, we took the decision to keep working on finishing those parts today and tomorrow but not performing in the dynamic events. It was a harsh decision, but the car was simply too far from running without risking destroying many things.
The design judges came back to give us some feedback: we had it all, apart from testing & validation. The judges were impressed by our design and integration, but just like with MRT15, we were lacking testing time, which is pretty much the only reason why we didn’t make it to design finals.
Day 4 of comp:
We spent the morning split between a few jobs on the car and watching endurance. The afternoon we packed the trailer and watched endurance as a full team. Although we were dissappointed about our dynamic performance, we used the opportunity to be together and learn for the future. We attended the design review, business presentations, and final ceremony as a team, where we won 1st in Technical Drawings! Shoutout to Paul for the good work once again! We had a relaxing night at the campground before packing up to head back the next morning.
It is clear that we did not achieve our goal; the car was not able to compete in all of the events. That being said, we know we have an excellent car on our ends, and all we need is a little more time. We have set a plan for the next two weeks before Formula North, and we hope to come charging out of the tracks for that. More news to come in the next few weeks, so stay tuned!