Looming deadline for appearance at Phoenix International Raceway has ASU race car team battling stress, expectations
Editor’s note: This is the latest installation in a yearlong series about ASU's Formula SAEFormula SAE is a student design competition organized by the International Society of Automotive Engineers (now known as SAE International). team. Find links to previous stories at the end of this article.
These are the times that try men’s souls.
While the student engineers building a Formula-style car for competition in June aren’t inspiring a revolution like Thomas Paine, they are battling the tensions that always accompany great struggles.
Infighting. Disagreements. Discord.
They’re not pretty, but they’re a feature of every one of man’s great accomplishments, from the Shackleton expedition’s escape from Antarctica to the launch of the Voyager spacecraft. To suggest otherwise would be disingenuous.
The pressure notched up March 18, when news arrived that the team had secured a $10 million insurance policy to drive the pace car lap at the Indy car races at Phoenix International Raceway on April 2.
Insurance requirements for either a pace car lap or a booth at the raceway had been insurmountable, so the team was resigned to missing the event. Now they were faced with turning a (mostly) completed engine, a completed chassis and a pile of components into a car.
In about two weeks.
The cry went out across email, for shop days, shop nights, shop afternoons: “WE NEED YOU!” “Shop Night TONIGHT!” “Shop Day for IndyCar event.”