Formula Student UK 2011 - Competition Report

Full Blue Racing have competed in the Formula Student UK competition at Silverstone, for their third time.

Overall the event was a mixed success. A number of the core team were required to start their new jobs early this year (ie. immediately after term ends) which caused quite a major shortfall in manpower during the most critical, post-term stage. Those who were left worked around the clock (in the final week some team members averaged 21hrs work on the car per day) to get the car finished in time for the event, or more specifically the scruitneering slot, which the team managed on the Saturday afternoon.

Although a great effort and success to get the car finished for then, this left no time for testing, and sadly engine troubles put pay to any hopes for dynamic points. It turned out that the Megasquirt ECU, required a change of IGBTs suitable for running the coils, the spark was not strong enough to turn the engine over under its own steam.

More positive was the team’s static event performance. Friday kicked off with the business event, and FBR scored 19th Place, their best ever result in this event, up 10 places from last year. Next followed the design and cost events, where the team finished 28th and 55th respectively, showing gains of 2 and 7 place respectively.

Overall the team finished in the middle order, 55th. A reasonable, if not slightly disappointing result. It should be pointed out at this point, FBR is competing against teams most (but not all) of whom have much (in some cases several orders of magnitude) larger budgets and complete the car as part of their degree, rather than additional to it. That is not to make excuses however, the team has identified plenty of areas the team can improve on for next year in order to get the car finished, and tested, for FSUK, plans for which are already being worked on.

In summary, not quite the performance the team was hoping for, but an improvement in all areas over last year and with a working engine the team is looking strong for its best ever result in Germany in 2 weeks time.