Formula Student !

September 26, 2019  |   News

After becoming a little disenchanted with the large corporate machines of Premier League Football, our Directors decided to look at a slightly different sponsorship package in the local community in 2019, stepping far away from advertising on the LED boards at St Mary’s Stadium.

After a brief phone call in December 2018 between our air export clerk, Tasha Birch, and Anokh Vithayathil, Head of PR & Sponsorship for the Southampton University Formula Student Team (SUFEST), they decided to sponsor a very exciting project for our local, and world renowned, University of Southampton, to help transport their race car across Europe as it competed against other universities.

“Formula Student is an international design competition, where university teams design, build, and compete with a Formula-style, single seater race-car. ” Said Anokh.

Formula Student Stag VI Racing Car
Team Effort – with the STAG VI

He continues “Our team was competing with STAG VI, our 7th car, and thanks to our new partnership with SFS, this was the first season where we would compete in three different competitions in one summer, a rare feat for UK teams.

STAG VI, was the car we had developed. Its chassis comprises an aluminium monocoque at the front, bolted to a steel subframe at the rear. The suspension is completely custom, with carbon fibre wishbones and 3D printed titanium ends. The powertrain utilises a motorbike engine from a Honda CBR600RR, and for grip in the corners we have a fully customised carbon fibre aerodynamics package made entirely in-house at the university by students.

The first competition of the summer was Formula Student UK, at Silverstone Circuit, one week after the British Grand Prix. We arrived after completing 100+ miles of testing with our car in the preceding fortnight. We passed through scrutineering with minor issues, ready for the dynamic events on Saturday. A blown fuse in the practice area meant reduced time for our drivers to get comfortable but we moved on to the acceleration (75m straight line) event and then the skid pad (figure of 8 cornering) – where we would set the 3rd fastest time. Unfortunately, a suspension failure meant we could not set another time in skid pad, and our team immediately got to work to fix the issue before sprint (single lap shootout) in the afternoon. We managed to get the car ready, but an electronics failure halfway through our first lap meant we had to fix the car before the endurance (22km time trial) on Sunday. We managed to have the car ready for endurance, but after 2 laps our silencer disintegrated in spectacular fashion and we were disqualified for excessive noise. We would finish the UK event 20th from 81 teams, but with 3rd place in skid pad and the top UK team in the presentation events.

Formula Student Stag VI Racing Car

Two weeks later we travelled to Hockenheim for Formula Student Germany. A delay in passing scrutineering meant we missed skid-pad, and with the tyre-change station closed, we were unable to set a time in acceleration. A suspension failure in the practice area on Saturday was fixed for sprint in afternoon. Our first driver accidentally triggered a brake safety device leading to a slow time, but our next driver managed to set a banker lap. Unfortunately, a suspension failure on his second run led to a DNF. In endurance we succumbed to a broken fuse halfway through the first lap which was the end of the event for us. We enjoyed seeing all the teams on show and it was a fantastic experience to be at the most competitive FS competition in the world.

For our final competition, we moved on to Autodrom Most for Formula Student Czech Republic. A swift run through scrutineering allowed the team to prepare well for the design, cost, and business presentations, as well as checking over the car for the dynamic events. We set competitive times in acceleration and skid pad on Friday morning, with no reliability issues. Our drivers then managed to get the full two laps each for the sprint event in the afternoon and set competitive times. The next day was the endurance event where we would have to complete two 11km stints with a driver change in between. Our first driver set fast laps and kept up the pace, making a few overtakes along the way. A swift driver change got our second driver in the hot seat who continued our great pace. After a long 22 laps, with our team watching on from the stands, we finished the endurance with a time of 28m and 1 second, securing us a record points haul. We would finish 10th out of 33 teams in a very competitive field, and we placed as the top UK team.

We could not have achieved this success without the support of Southampton Freight Services who kindly transported our car and equipment across Europe.”

Our Managing Director, Ross Negus said; “At SFS we have a long history supporting various departments within the University of Southampton for their international freight requirements, so when the call came in from the team, we jumped at the opportunity to assist this exciting project.

The FSUK team worked tirelessly to design, build, market and ultimately race the vehicle, and we feel tremendously proud of their acheivements, and tremendously proud to be part of the project.”

Formula Student Stag VI Racing Car
Safely back in our warehouse
The Team and our logo proudly sitting amongst the likes of Santader and Dominos Pizza!

Soton Freight on Facebook

Unable to display Facebook posts.
Show error

Error: API access disrupted. Go to the App Dashboard and complete Data Use Checkup.
Type: OAuthException
Code: 200
Please refer to our Error Message Reference.