Formula team finishes second in national competition

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The UW-Madison formula race car, ready to run

The UW-Madison formula race car awaits its run in national competition held in Detroit. (large image)

UW-Madison formula race car team trophy

The formula race car team finished second in the national competition, garnering another trophy for the program. (large image)

UW-Madison’s Formula SAE Racing Team raced to a second-place finish among more than 125 teams at the Formula SAE competition in May in Detroit.

This was the second podium finish in three years for the Badgers, following a second place finish in 2000 and a fourth place finish in 2001.

The team earned top 10 finishes in six of the seven scored events of the competition. That produced an overall score good for second place, behind a team from Cornell University. The UW-Madison Formula SAE team is the only one in recent history to finish in the top ten for three consecutive years.

The UW-Madison team took first place in marketing presentation, led by students Rob Schellin and Yarrow Fewless. The design presentation took sixth place, but the high cost of the SAE Racing Team car led to 82nd place finish in the cost presentation.

Seth Jaeck ran a 4.266 second acceleration run to earn a seventh-place finish, and Greg Aykens circled the skid-pad course in a quick 5.234 seconds. Rob Schellin and Tim Isenberg scored an impressive fourth-place finish in the autocross event.

The Badgers were one of only 32 teams to finish the demanding 22-kilometer endurance event, with Schellin and Isenberg driving the car to a third-place place finish.

Beyond the scored events, the team also took home the Bosch Engine Management award for the second year in a row, due largely to the efforts of Dan Schum, Matt Manthey, and Pat McArdle. The trio spent a number of hours implementing electronic throttle control, traction and launch control, and performing engine dynomometer testing. The UW-Madison team, for the second year in a row, was the only team to run with an electronic throttle control (ETC). Next year, however, ETC will be banned from the Formula SAE competition.

The UW-Madison Formula SAE Racing team is sponsored by the College of Engineering, along with local and national sponsors, and is affiliated with the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Students team up every year to design, build, market and race a formula-style race car. For more information about the UW-Madison Formula SAE Racing Team, and to view a complete list of sponsors, visit