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Swansea Motorsport- The 2013 Monoposto Championship

One of the pleasures of 2013 has been to see the Swansea Metropolitan University team develop and succeed. We asked their team manager Rachel Hogg to tell us about the year.

Contrary to popular belief, not all university students spend Saturday mornings lying in bed nursing a hangover. For twelve students from Swansea Metropolitan University many weekends are spent at UK racing circuits, competing in the St Cross Electronics Monoposto Championship with engineering lecturer, Tim Tudor, driver of the Formula Renault.

The team have just completed their third season racing the Formula Renault, having joined the Monoposto Championship for the 2013 season. The project, originally conceived by university lecturers, has provided students with excellent real life experience they can take with them into future careers. The team is made up of students from Motorsport Engineering and Motorsport Management courses, providing a practical platform for students to apply the theoretical knowledge they gain during their time at university.

Checking and cleaning....... ....and inspecting The car without decals.

After a long winter, with plenty of improvements made to the car in the workshop, including a full rebuild and trips to the team’s local circuit, Pembrey, for testing the team began the 2013 season at Donington Park in April. Not only had the engineers been busy working towards the 2013 season, the management team had been busy securing funding, updating social media, providing uniforms and generally ensuring the season will run smoothly.

Unfortunately the season didn’t get off to the best start, with the car suffering from a lack of power at the opening round of the season. Despite the issues the team remained up- beat and continued to trouble shoot throughout the following weeks ahead of the consecutive rounds at Brands Hatch. Engine issues continued to plague the results at Brands Hatch and Oulton Park, however the students continued to work tirelessly throughout the summer holiday to iron out the problems and provide Tim with a competitive car.

In July the team took the car to Gotboost Performance Tuning to check the engine power. The engine was subsequently re- timed for the 7th and 8th rounds of the season at Castle Combe. Finally the student’s hard work paid off with Tim picking up his first podium finish, a 3rd in class in very wet conditions. The success continued throughout the weekend with Tim finishing 4th in class in the second race and picking up the Driver of the Day award.

Final adjustments to the monoshock front suspension Snetterton assembly area Tim thanks the team on the pit wall

Back in Swansea a complete engine change was performed before Silverstone with the aim of finding more power and continuing the team’s success. The home of British Motorsport provided the team with another exciting weekend of racing with good results and a great spectacle with 54 cars on the grid.

The final weekend of at Snetterton provided the perfect end to a brilliant season. Tim once again picked up a 4th in class and the Driver of the day award for the first race and finished on the podium, 3rd in class in the final race of the season. Overall the team finished 7th in class, their highest Championship finish to date.

The team have worked incredibly hard throughout the season and have remained positive and committed throughout some difficult times. The support from University and our Sponsors has been first class and without them this worthwhile project would cease to exist. The lecturers involved in the project give up a great deal of time to help the team and their genuine belief in the students is encouraging.Finally, the team would like to pass on their thanks to all those involved in the Monoposto Championship. Everyone has been so welcoming and helped us out when we have been in need. The Championship has been excellently managed and we have thoroughly enjoyed every weekend.
For the 2014 season the team will be entering an MCR race car into the Sports 2000 Championship. If you are interested in following our progress we regularly update Facebook (Swansea Motorsport) and Twitter (@SMU_Motorsport).

Rachel Hogg
Team Manager

The only non-Swansea originated image, Andrew Cliffe's picture shows the car at Snetterton The team bid a farewell to Mono.

Editorial addition: Rachel's obviously too modest to admit it, but I have been told by Kevin Couling that the direction to take with the car at the tracks is wholly the decision of the students, with the lecturers only inputting if there is a safety issue. So it really is a student team. I've also been told by Simon Davey that the team has on several occasions been extremely helpful in providing paddock/assembly marshalling, which helps make the meeting run much, much smoother. The whole team will be missed, for many reasons, and we wish them all the best in their Sports 2000 venture, and after that in their motorsport careers.

Disclaimer: The above represents only the unofficial view of the writer and not of the Monoposto Racing Club in any way whatsover. Subheadlines and captions are not originated from the named author. We are unable to reproduce results due to copyright reasons. If any pictures are copyright and the owner wishes them removed please email us.