Racing between competitions and victories

It’s been a summer full of competitions and victories for the Delft University of Techonology Racing team. Just back from the Formula Student Germany, the Team is already gearing up for their next competition in Austria.

Earlier in July, they won the prestigious Formula Student UK, on the Silverstone circuit, with the student-designed electrical race car managing a tight finish

“The competition in Germany was definitely tougher. Our competitors were running with cars fully prepared for a tough competition, unlike the event at Silverstone, which is for some teams still a bit of a testing event,” says Laurent Hubert, the operations manager of the team. He says that set-up wise, the arrangement are the same, but the experience differs at each. “Of course, winning was an important factor for us, but any Formula Student event is an absolutely amazing experience.”

Hubert says the true spirit of the Formula Student races lies in the camaraderie at the races. “We may be competing against each other, but in the end, we are out to help each other. Our mobile workshop is an example of that, but there are many others.”

Despite the win at Silverstone, they had to make some changes to the car as its performance wasn’t ideal. For Germany, they worked on the endurance and the software used by the vehicle. “As to what’s next: there’s one FS competition left, at the RedBull Ring in Austria, and we are determined to give our competition a run for their money! We will be testing thoroughly the coming weeks to prepare the car optimally for the event. Additionally, the core team of the next car, the DUT15, is already starting on their design for next season.”

The final race marks the end of a nine month journey. Work on the concept began around September 2013 and was complete by June. The DUT14 car had its own differentiators at the race, one of them being the light-weight tires. “Our drivetrain and light-weight concept are definitely different from other cars and are what set it apart.”

Are any of these ideas likely to get picked up by bigger companies? “Our innovations do not necessarily get copied 1:1 into commercial/customer cars. However, often you will see our alumni moving into the automobile industry to spread their ideas and knowledge into those designs. Our alumni work at Tesla, Volkswagen, Lotus F1, Audi F1, you name it.”

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