Bronco Motorsports place 1st in the SoCal Shootout racing competition

By Anais Hernandez, Oct. 25, 2022

On Oct. 15, Cal Poly Pomona’s Bronco Motorsports team won their first competition of the season, placing first at the SoCal Shootout.

The team participated in the second annual SoCal Shootout Scholastic Racing hosted by Adams Motorsports Park in Riverside, where they won the first-place prize of $1,000 and a hardware award.

After weeks of testing and improving their race car, Bronco Motorsports drove directly towards P1, securing first place against six other universities with UC Berkeley coming in second and the University of Southern California in third place.

Courtesy of Kion Veitschegger

Other participants included USC, UCLA, UC Berkeley, UC San Diego, CSU Fullerton and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

The team’s vehicle, the BM-22, sustained some damage given the car’s previous usage and the unfamiliar terrain.

“Everyone is happy that we were able to compete with like USC, UC Berkeley and perform at a real race track for the first time in over two years,” said Bronco Motorsports scheduler and cooling captain Isaac Haynes. “With that being said, our car received a lot of wear across the track because we didn’t design it for this type of track.”

Racing on this track gave the team more knowledge on fine-tuning mistakes before the big international competition in May 2023.

“The track itself was a good stress test,” said business lead and BM-22 driver Dekota Fripp.

“That track taught us a lot more about the car than we would have learned otherwise on flatter surfaces because it’s so extreme with the straight-line speed.”

Fripp’s previous karting experience gave the team an advantage during the competition. His strategy and knowledge on the track pushed the car to its limits and helped the team secure the win.

During the initial​ laps of the race, the BM-22 race car overtook USC’s and UC San Diego’s cars, surprising the audience and team members. BM-22 had the event’s fastest lap, with UC Berkley coming four-tenths of a second behind.

“We have this budget,” said Bronco Motorsports president Marvin Sevilla. “We have this money. We have this car. We’re not here to mess around. We’re here to race, and that’s exactly what we did.”

The team voiced ambitions to make new changes to the car, but time constraints held them behind. Many projects were scrapped, but some changes went through to improve the vehicle’s performance.

The team changed the fuel to C-85, which consists of higher ethanol content, ran cooler and gave the vehicle more power across the track.

Brakes captain David Bocanegra shared that it was a stressful time upon discovering that the brakes were well beyond use a week before the race.

A warped rotor required time-consuming tests and getting new rotors from sponsors in time for the competition.

“I’m proud of how everyone is able to juggle schoolwork and their formula work,” said design lead Roger Herrera. “I see the work each and every one of them does, and I’m really proud of them for that.”

Bronco Motorsports plans to continue using the same chassis but will keep refining suspension setups and improving the car’s bodywork. They also plan to​ use the prize money on machine services, tools, and team apparel.

The team continues its efforts to be a top racing team by offering its members and engineering students the opportunity to gain knowledge on the Formula Society of Automotive Engineers systems.

Throughout the remainder of the season, they will provide in-person presentations on specific car systems like powertrain, vehicle dynamics, aerodynamics, electrical and even the team’s business side.

Herrera also mentioned that the team began the design for the 2023-2024 race car and is preparing their upcoming presentation in mid-November, where they will discuss the design unveiling.

“We will keep building a team and focusing on building the best car we can,” stated Sevilla.

CPP’s FSAE team will rev its engine for another hopeful win in May 2023 at Michigan International Speedway, where they will compete internationally with other universities.

The campus community can stay updated with the team via Instagram or their official website.

Feature image courtesy of Ryan Chang

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