Surrey wins highest ever place in Formula Student 2014
Mechanical Engineering students from Surrey came 22nd out of nearly a hundred teams – and seventh in the UK – in the world’s largest student motorsport competition.
Run by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers since 1998, Formula Student challenges university students from around the world to design and build their own single-seat racing car. Taking place on 9 to 13 July, Formula Student 2014 saw over 2,000 students from 38 countries gathering at Silverstone Circuit to put their cars to the test in a gruelling programme of dynamic and static events.
Achieving Surrey’s best ever result in the competition, Team SURTES (Surrey University Racing Technology and Engineering Solutions) finished in 22nd place out of 97 teams internationally and seventh in the UK. The team scored particularly well in the dynamic events, ranking in the top ten out of all UK teams in every event. The car was the UK’s third fastest (14th overall) in the acceleration test, sixth for endurance (17th overall), seventh in the sprint (26th overall) and ninth in the skidpad event (30th overall).
Led by Mechanical Engineering students Dan Hook and James Haybittle, the team spent ten intensive months building and fine-tuning their car, focusing on improving handling and driveability by optimising the suspension and improving traction.
Weighing 209 kg, the SURTES team car – Stag ‘14 – features a hybrid chassis consisting of a carbon fibre monocoque and a 4130 steel spaceframe. It is powered by a Honda CBR 600 RR engine which can achieve a maximum power of over 60 kW at 10,500 rpm. Designed and engineered within the University’s Formula Student Design Centre, it was supported by main sponsor Caltest along with NGK, 3TEK, National Instruments, Emkay Plastics, Ricardo, IPG, brp composites and Hoosier.
Senior Lecturer Dr Patrick Gruber commented: “I’m really pleased that all the hard work the team put into designing and building Stag’14 paid off. The car performed excellently in the dynamic events and demonstrated the high level of automotive knowledge students gain through our Mechanical Engineering programmes.”
Formula Student has become known as a key training ground for the automotive engineers of the future, with dozens of alumni having progressed to Formula 1 - including Surrey alumni Adam Sparkes and Chris Lackey - and hundreds more now working at the world’s leading automotive companies, helping to design and engineer the cars of tomorrow.