Pit stop at joanneum racing graz 3.0: Full throttle into the new year
Welcome to our new blog entry. The new year brings some challenges for the Weasels. In this entry you can read about what awaits the team in the coming months and the current status of the new racing car.
Currently there are a lot of things going on in the workshop of Joanneum Racing Graz. “We are in the middle of the manufacturing phase”, says Alexander Zopf, technical director of the Weasels. The team is working on the first car with electric drive, the jr22, under strict Corona conditions. From the completion of the battery, the preparation of the chassis for assembly to the production of the rims – these are intensive weeks for the racing team. “We are just commissioning the last functionally relevant components from our sponsors. We can manufacture simple components in-house”, says Alexander. It is also still possible to participate in the picture support of this year’s racing car. For a small amount of money, you can send in a photo that will decorate the rear wing of the jr22 together with the other entries. This way, friends, family and fans of the team will always be there when the car travels through Europe this summer.
Quizzes as a qualification process
But it is not only in the workshop that the team is currently challenged; another event is also keeping heads spinning. At the end of January, the annual registration quizzes of various Formula Student competitions are coming up: “A large number of teams will take part in a small number of competitions. Who finally secures one of the coveted starting places is determined by a selection procedure – the so-called Registration Quizzes,” explains organisational director Thomas Schmid. This is especially true for those events that enjoy great popularity in the Formula Student community.
The quizzes will cover a wide range of topics. In addition to the Formula Student rules, mechanical engineering topics will be asked. Thus, mechanics or thermodynamics examples have to be solved. Questions on the static disciplines of business plan and cost report are also possible. “There is a time limit per question, which depends on the difficulty of the question. The time limit ranges from one to ten minutes”, says Thomas. The Weasels meet once or twice a week to train for the quizzes: “The preparation starts a month before. We simulate a real quiz with practice quizzes that we organise ourselves so that we can train under real conditions. This way we learn how best to work together and solve the tasks efficiently.”
If everything goes smoothly, the Weasels will compete in three to four competitions this summer. One fixed date this year is Formula Student Austria at the Red Bull Ring. As an Austrian team, Joanneum Racing Graz is already qualified, but they will still take the quiz. “The quiz is also about the order for the technical inspections. The better you do in the quiz, the earlier a team is in the scrutineering. This offers the advantage of having more time for preparations and test drives,” Thomas emphasises the double relevance of the quizzes.
From Rollout to Sponsors Day
However, before the jr22 can compete with the other teams’ cars on the race track, the annual rollout is scheduled for April. The car is presented to the public for the first time. After a digital rollout show last year, the team hopes to return to a presence event this year. Once the rollout has been successfully completed, the jr22 will enter the test phase. The purpose of this is to find weak points and improve performance. In addition, the drivers train for the different disciplines. “The more that goes wrong during testing, the less will go wrong during the competition”, Thomas hopes. After the competitions, the season traditionally comes to an end with the Sponsors Day in autumn. But the Weasels hardly have time for a break: after all, after jr22 is before jr23.
by Julia Schöttel