Networking Lunch

29 Apr
Chrysler employees meet with competition participants

Chrysler employees meet with competition participants

Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler, three of Formula Hybrid’s platinum sponsors, hosted a networking lunch today at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. The lunch was an opportunity for students participating in this year’s competition to connect with professionals working in the US automotive industry, and to explore potential career paths after Formula Hybrid. A number of the employees working at the recruiting booth competed in Formula Hybrid, and all of the competition’s sponsors valued the hands-on engineering experience that perspective hires gained by participating in the competition. At the lunch, employees collected student resumes and explained various corporate responsibilities to competition participants.

In addition to connecting with students at the Networking Lunch, employees of the Big Three also met with students at all of the competition’s events. For corporate recruiters, Formula Hybrid is an excellent opportunity to watch students solve real-world problems in a professional environment.

Formula Hybrid student discusses the competition with a GM employee

Formula Hybrid student discusses the competition with a GM employee

Student explains her resume to GM employee

Student explains her resume to GM employee

Video: University of Akron’s first Formula Hybrid entry

29 Apr

Electical and Mechanical Inspections

29 Apr
Embry-Riddle Electical System

Embry-Riddle works on their car’s electrical system

Before the on-track events, Formula Hybrid teams must pass a series of technical inspections to ensure that their vehicles are reliable and safe. According to Jacob Gersh, a sophomore at the University of Michigan, one of the more challenging inspections is electrical inspection. Taking teams anywhere from a few hours to a full day to pass, this inspection ensures that the electrical systems on a competition vehicle function properly and automatically shut down in the case of an accident. To ensure that each Formula Hybrid car is safe, judges test the high and low voltage electrical systems on each team’s vehicle on the second day of the competition. If a vehicle’s electrical systems is not rules compliant, the competition’s judges inform the team and give them a reasonable timeframe to fix the problem.

“Our motto is ‘Design, build, test,’” explains Gersh. “During electrical inspection, our team often goes back to the ‘build’ phase, and then performs on-site tests to make sure our car complies with the competition’s rules.”

University of Michigan

University of Michigan

Mechanical inspection is conducted on the second day of the competition. While electrical inspection tests the safety of each hybrid vehicle’s power train, mechanical inspection examines the structural elements of each car. Charlie Delorenzo, a junior at UVM, explains that competition judges look at all of the components of a competition car, inspecting everything from the thickens of the tubing used for a car’s frame to the threads on the bolts which hold a car together.

“The preliminary examination usually takes about an hour and a half,” explains Delorenzo. “After the preliminary inspection, the competition judges tell teams what elements of the car need to be fixed before the team is allowed to hit the track. While the turn around time varies for each team, this year it took UVM about an hour make the modifications required to compete.”

University of Vermont

University of Vermont

While judges work with each team on an individual basis, this year’s mechanical and electrical inspections officially end at 4:00 PM today.

University of Waterloo Mechanical Inspection

Mechanical Inspection, University of Waterloo

Day 1 – Recap

28 Apr

Today 17 teams unloaded vehicles at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the start of the 2014 Formula Hybrid Competition. The paddock was full of determination and enthusiasm, while teams prepared their vehicle for the technical inspections. The University of Michigan – Ann Arbor and the University of Vermont successfully passed the Electrical Pre-Inspection. Additionally, both teams made a first attempt at the Mechanical Inspection. As the sun set, many teams were making progress on a rules-compliant vehicle and are optimistic to be first in line for Electrical Pre-Inspection in the morning.

2014 Formula Hybrid Competition

23 Apr

The 2014 Formula Hybrid Competition is taking place at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, NH.

Check back for updates during the competition.

Results and Awards

3 May

The 2013 Formula Hybrid Competition finished with a windy awards ceremony at Victory Lane of New Hampshire motor speedway. The teams were all commended for their hard work, congratulated for their victories, including passing inspection, and for their innovation, craftsmanship, perseverance, and performance.

The endurance run, (for which photos have been posted  here: was full of excitment. Yale demonstrated excellence and speed as their team’s hybrid whizzed around the track and completed the 22 kilometers without a problem. The all-electric UVM racer started out strong but due to a technical failure was knocked out of the race for over a half an hour. They still managed to finish the event. Dartmouth’s EV also experienced problems with the engine overheating,  but after a brief stop they finished the race. Lawrence Tech, slow and steady, also completed the event. 

Surprise appearances near the end of the endurance event by Carleton Univeristy, Embry Riddle University, and University of Michigan added some excitement to the event. All three teams had finally passed inspection, but did not have enough time to finish the event. 


The awards ceremony was kept brief and to the point, because a cold wind was blowing through the infield. The teams all huddled up at victory lane as the awards were presented by Formula Hybrid, IEEE, Chrysler, and GM. 

McMaster University won the GM Best Engineered Hybrid Award, even despite last minute control issues that prevented them from racing. Yale, the overall fastest car at the competition, won second place. 

The IEEE Engineering the Future Award went to Yale, and the Excellence in EV Engineering went to Dartmouth. 

Yale also took home the Chrysler Innovation award, with Michigan in second place and Mcmaster, third. 

And the overall competition results were:

In the Hybrid division, Yale took first place, with Lawrence Tech coming in second, and McMaster University in third. 

In the electric division, Dartmouth took number 1, with Vermont a close second. 


Thanks to all teams who participated, thanks to Doug Fraser and Amy Keeler for organizing the event, all the volunteers who helped, and all the OEMs, recruiters and corporate sponsors. 


Remember to check out the Thayer Flicker photostream for more photos of the event, and the DFR youtube channel for videos of the event.



Current Standings

2 May

Overall Points: (hybrid)

Yale: 518.80

Lawrence Tech: 307.07

McMaster University: 260.00


Dartmouth: 460.63

Vermont: 417.81

Also: new pictures posted to the Thayer photoset


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