RIT Baja race team opens season with top placements at competition in Texas

Second-place finish overall and in design presentation add to successful first event

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RIT Baja Race Team

RIT’s Baja Racing took second place overall among 100 universities in the opening SAE Baja Competition.

RIT’s Baja Racing took second place overall among 100 universities in the opening SAE Baja Competition, and made the cover of the El Paso Times.

The team’s first event of the 2014 season took place April 24–27 at the University of Texas El Paso. It was the first time since 1998 that RIT Baja competed in the southwest event, winning the traction and suspension individual events and placing second in the design portion.

“Our performance once again demonstrates the superior nature of our Baja program and RIT in general,” said Marty Gordon, professor of mechanical engineering technology and academic advisor for the Baja team. “Having a good number of engineering-practice-trained MET students on the team really helps us to stay practical and focused on using what we’ve learned in our ongoing research and testing. Baja is really about analyzing, designing and building a product that will not fail under extremely challenging conditions.”

Steve Skurski, this year’s team manager and a third-year mechanical engineering technology student, agreed. “This year’s team focused on reducing vehicle weight, component optimization and system integration. These goals were achieved by increasing the number of team members from not only mechanical engineering technology and mechanical engineering but from many other programs in several colleges across campus.”

The team will continue its season in Pittsburg, Kan., in May and Peoria, Ill., in June.

Meet and talk to members of the team about its off-road racecar and season competitions at the upcoming Imagine RIT: Innovation and Creativity Festival on May 3 in the Technology Quarter located near the Engineering Technology Building.

Photo galleries

El Paso Times photo gallery from the event, including images of RIT Baja Racing: