Rensselaer Motorsport was recently featured on GarageX TV ( We met up with these guys at Saratoga Auto Museum where we could admire the fine cars on display and they could ask us about our racecar (R9 from 2009) on display there. Watch the entire video below or jump ahead to 29:45 for the team.

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Rensselaer Motorsport on GarageX TV

It’s a decent way into the spring semester, and Troy is frozen under nearly 2 feet of snow. What’s the best way to warm up from the chilly weather? Well, that’s an easy one… building a racecar of course!

We’ve had quite a few members come in over the last few days, trekking out into the cold and snow. As you can see below, a new exhaust has been tacked and fitted. Check out the second picture to see how little clearance there is between the firewall and the headers! AJ Pyne’s hard work has really paid off, and we’re excited to see how it will perform out on the track.

Also, the aero team has made an appearance at Bumstead! Jason Slingerland and Jonathan Karsh are here gluing foam together.

RM20 exhaust



RM20 exhaust clearance

Clearance Between Exhaust Headers and Firewall


aero foam

Matt Saucier supervising as Jason Slingerland applies liquid nails to foam board for the front and rear wings.

Last night (1/25) was the Mayor’s Cup at the Times Union Center, between RPI and Union College. It was a close call, but RPI came out victorious with a 2-1 final score. Maybe it was the cheering RPI fans, maybe it was the way the stars aligned, but some say it was because of the luck Puckman got by touching our car!

R12 brought Puckman luck, leading to a 4-2 victory against Union College.

R12 brought Puckman luck, leading to a 4-2 victory against Union College.

Rensselaer Motorsport participated in the Fan Zone, showing off school spirit and all of the exciting things that RPI students do last night at Times Union. This was the 2nd annual Mayor’s Cup game, and we were proud to be a part of it. In the photo above, you can see (left to right) Jonathan Karsh, Puckman, Kyle Dieterle, Jake Kalish, and Emily McWilliams (Team Leader).



Unfortunately, RM20 experienced a critical suspension failure immediately prior to Michigan. The team didn’t feel that the car could be fixed to an acceptable level of safety and performance in the limited time we had. As the car never went through tech inspection it’s still eligible for Michigan next year. Thanks to all our sponsors and supporters; we’re working to get the car on the track as soon as possible and keep up the work!

Rollout was a huge success. The team would like to thank Dr. Jackson, EMPAC, The Office of the President, The Mechanical, Aeronautical, Nuclear, and Electrical Engineering Department, and the School of Engineering. This event would not have been possible without you. We would also like to thank all of our guests who attended the event. The team has worked thousands of hours to build RM20 and really appreciate all of the support everyone has shown.

The team has also been working very hard lately and the car is nearly track ready. The aero kit now has side pods, a nose cone, and a rear wing. These are going to be integral parts of the car which should produce around 400 lbs of down force at 60 mph. This will help the car corner better, giving the car more grip at faster speeds, therefore allowing the car to put down faster times in the skid pad, endurance, and autocross events.

The chassis and suspension have been nearly fully redesigned this year. We now have carbon fiber A-arms in place of the previous year’s steel A-arms. This extensive use of carbon fiber tubes reduces weight, manufacturing time, and strength. For the engine, drivetrain, and electrical systems, everything but the engine has been though the design process in one way or another. This means that this year’s car will have more useable and predictable power and make the car faster.

The team has spent a great deal of time getting to this point in RM20’s development. Many hours have been spent researching, designing, and manufacturing this race car. The team has also put a lot of effort into making sure that the team is running as effectively as possible. Clearly these efforts have been successful as is evidenced by the 2013 car,  RM20, that was presented last Monday. We will continue our efforts to get the car out on the track in the coming weeks. Prior to driving however, the engine must be broken in on our chassis dyno. Check back soon to see the first driving videos of RM20.


The team explaining the design of the car to fellow students, sponsors, school officials, and family members at rollout.

President Jackson posing for a photo with the team at the rollout event on last Monday

The car being shown to the audience after the presentation at rollout.

     Over the past few weeks a huge amount of work has been finished. The car is almost completely welded and the structural carbon panels have been fully formed and bent to fit the chassis. These panels are now ready to be bonded to the chassis once the car gets back from powerdercoat. The car should be heading to be powdercoated in the next week. All of the bonding will be done over spring break along with the fabrication of the aerodynamics package. The car will start being assembled soon after this work is finished to prepare it for a trip to Calspan to test the aero package in a wind tunnel.

     In addition to physical work on the car a lot of work is getting done for the design side of competition. The design report and spec sheet are now finished and looking great. The CAD assembly of the car is nearly complete and shows how awesome 2013 race car is going to look.  The shop has a new way of informing team members of whether or not the shop is open. Those authorized to open the shop will be sending a tweet every time they open and close the shop. You can find the shop’s twitter page here.


An assembly of the car is CAD showing what the car will look like once it is fully assembled.

The team on a field trip to an ice racing course.