Last night (and early this morning) budget hotel parking lots near the Lincoln, NE Municipal Airport resembled tent cities, converted to temporary “pits’ by some of 80+ Formula SAE and Formula SAE Electric teams in town for a design competition.
A number of the racing design teams rolled their cars out for last-minute adjustments or even final assembly. If there wasn’t enough room in their hotel lot the next-door restaurant’s asphalt did very nicely. Perkins restaurant/bakery was especially accommodating, thank you very much!
Missouri S&T has two teams in the event, veteran Formula SAE (S&T Racing as they like to call themselves) and rookie team Formula SAE Electric. Electric design events are just getting established in North America and there are growing pains for organizers and teams alike. S&T’s E211 car had some maddening gremlins pop up where least expected. Head electrical engineer Nathan Loika was up all night trying to figure out why the motor controller wasn’t giving the drive motor enough current to make the wheels spin. At some point even the youngest of us must stop for rest. Nathan crashed early this afternoon and got some waaaay-overdue shuteye. Now that it’s dark he’s back in Howard Johnson’s version of pit row, ready for another attempt. The Miners’ Formula SAE combustion team is pitching by loaning the DC crew one of their own EE experts, all with the goal helping their peers pass tech.
Formula electric has but one day to get through tech inspection before tackling Friday’s dynamic events
Before we get the local chamber of commerce folks up in arms, these hotels are just fine! Very reasonable rates, great staff, and lots and lots of parking spaces…