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Clarkson Mini-baja Team Heads North To Compete In Quebec
[A photo of last year’s Mini Baja car for newspaper use is available at http://www.clarkson.edu/news/photos/minibaja2000.jpg]
The Clarkson University Mini-Baja Design Team will compete in the 2000 Mini-Baja East Competition in Montreal, Quebec.
The University of Quebec is hosting the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE)-sanctioned off-road vehicle design competition on May 11-13. Sponsors include Briggs & Stratton and General Motors.
The objective of the Eastern Mini-Baja competition is to design and fabricate an amphibious, off-road racing vehicle. The vehicle must be able to traverse over rough terrain, and maneuver through narrow dirt trails and deep water. Not only does the racing vehicle need to be agile on land, but also it must be able to float and maneuver through water that is 10-feet deep.
At the competition, more than 40 teams will compete in events to test their vehicles’ speed, land maneuverability, braking ability, towing capacity and water maneuverability. The highlight of the competition is the four-hour endurance race on Saturday, May 13. Points are awarded to each team based on the performance in each event. The points for the endurance race are based on how many laps the vehicle completes in the four-hour time block. The endurance racecourse is a combination of varying terrain to test each vehicle’s handling and maneuvering abilities.
“The endurance race is more of a competition of whose vehicle doesn’t break down, than a competition of speed,” says team co-leader Matthew P. Derosier ’00 (Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, Northboro, Mass.).
This is the first time that the competition will be held this close to Clarkson University since 1994. Normally, the squad has had to travel great distances-- Cookville, Tenn., Orlando, Fla., or Morgantown, W.Va.-– for the competition.
“Having the competition so close this year is really nice,” says team co-leader Jason R. Bosinski ’00 (Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, West Seneca, N.Y.).
Clarkson has been a fixture in the top-ten for the past 11 years, winning more overall titles than any other collegiate team in the region. Their last overall title was in 1998.
The Mini Baja project is a part of Clarkson University’s SPEED (Student Projects for Engineering Experience and Design) program. SPEED promotes project-based learning opportunities by providing engineering design opportunities for Clarkson students through 14 projects, including FIRST Robotics, Formula SAE Racing and Solar Car. SPEED is supported by grants from General Electric, Alcoa, Goodyear, Nestle, Corning and Kodak.
For more information on the competition, visit the Mini-Baja East web page at http://www.etsminibaja.com.