Volunteers needed for Baja SAE Collegiate Design Series competitions this summer

National collegiate racecar teams will compete in sales and design presentations as part of seasonal competitions

provided by RIT Baja

RIT’s Baja race team had plans to compete in events over the summer curtailed because of COVID-19. They will be among a group of collegiate race teams expected to compete virtually in parts of the annual series specifically in sales and design.

Volunteers are needed for the Baja SAE virtual competitions taking place this summer. Although collegiate racecar teams cannot meet for onsite competitions, SAE International, the sponsoring organization, proposed virtual events featuring two of the main categories from the overall series—sales and design presentations.

The dates are May 26-29 for the sales portion and June 1-4 for the design portion. Those interested can sign up to volunteer online.

Volunteers for the sales event, which requires teams to present a manufacturing plan to a fictitious company in order to persuade the company to purchase the team’s vehicle design, should have experience in product development and communications. For the design category, volunteers should have an understanding of the engineering process and familiarity with automobile systems development and testing.

“With COVID-19 putting a damper on the 2020 Baja SAE competitions, SAE is planning to have teams WebEx Live their Sales and Design presentations. We are asking for your help,” said Sam Barill, SAE Collegiate Design Program Manager, in a statement. “Consider being a design or sales judge—this can be done from your home or office with a laptop or computer. Just a few days and only a few hours per day. These teams will be looking to you to help them during these difficult times.”

Since September, RIT’s Baja race team has been working on the 2020 vehicle, rebuilding and improving systems. The group expected to compete and follow up a successful 2019 season where they finished third overall in Tennessee, second overall in California and tenth overall in Rochester.

In June 2019, RIT hosted one of the national Baja SAE competitions in Rochester. Nearly 100 collegiate teams from across the United States and from six countries came to the university for two days for the sales, design and safety inspections portions of the competition. The competition moved to Hogback Hill in Palmyra, N.Y., for field events such as the hill climb, maneuverability and suspension; teams competed in the 4-hour endurance race on the last day of the competition. It was the seventh time RIT hosted teams from around the world.