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Sun Devil Motorsports to unveil 2023 Formula SAE racecar

The racecar, constructed by students from its design to build, will be shown on April 8 at the Podium Club at Attesa

Sundevil Motorsports club's SDM-22 car is pictured at Palm Walk on the Tempe Campus on Friday, Nov. 19, 2022.

The Sun Devil Motorsports club is set to unveil its 2023 Formula Society of Automated Engineers racecar on April 8 at the Podium Club at Attesa. The event, located in Casa Grande, will include test sessions, a car show and food trucks with gates opening at 9 a.m. and free entry.

SDM is a team of students at ASU that annually builds a racecar for the Formula SAE competition. FSAE is a competition among universities in which students are tasked with designing and building a prototype that could be used in national autocross events by amateur racecar drivers.

The students part of ASU's team dedicated time to the creation of this car. Leading the team was SDM's aerodynamic design specialist, graduate aerospace engineer student Seth Mazza. He helped with the carbon fiber elements of the car and designing the front and rear wings, sidepods and undertray.

"I have put a lot of energy and effort into designing over the last several months," Mazza said. "Being able to see it come to life and actually exist outside of my computer is awesome."

Design of the car began in early July, right after last year's competition and construction started in the fall semester once orders for parts were placed. Mazza said the team hasn't had a competitive car since 2019 due to supply chain issues and COVID-19. 

"I'm just looking forward to having a car that is done well before the competition, and I am fully confident that it is going to be very competitive," Mazza said. 

The team is 170 members, each person critical to the car in the jobs that they fulfill — whether it be through designing, working on, or driving the car. 

The club is split into different teams, like the engine and aerospace teams that come into the shop throughout the week. Drivers are chosen through a selection process and testing to see who can drive the car the fastest. According to Sam Krochman, SDM president and a senior studying aerospace engineering, there is always someone in the shop located in the Psychology Building dedicating time to working on the car. 

"It's a lot of work and it's a lot of tasks to get done," Krochman said. "Half the time I think it's just a miracle that we somehow get a car built."

Since motor parts can be pricey, the club values the sponsors that contribute to the team. Sponsorships have come from ASU, past SDM members and community members. So far, the group has been able to fundraise $14,200 of its $20,000 goal.

"Those (sponsorships) are really critical to us building the car because not only do we put thousands of man hours into the car, but they also cost thousands and thousands of dollars to make," Krochman said. "The support that we get from the community and from sponsors and everything is invaluable to us."

At ASU's annual Homecoming Parade, the team displays the car as a way to promote the club and invite new members to join. According to Krochman, this was the best recruitment year with 330 applicants. When joining, students do not need to have prior knowledge of cars, an engineering background or an aerospace major. 

"The only thing that we require is passion," Krochman said. "So much of the knowledge that we've gained here has come from 'doing' and that's something that you don't get in a classroom, which is why we encourage so many people to get involved."

Historical vehicles team lead and freshman mechanical engineering student Theo Powers came to ASU just to join the SDM team. 

"I saw this club all the way back when I had the Open Door in seventh grade and I was like, 'I get to build racecars? That sounds awesome,'" Powers said. "So before I came to ASU, I interviewed for this and I made sure it was the biggest thing, and I spent a lot of time doing this."

The upcoming event will reveal the club's car for the year and will also showcase past models. Powers is working on getting older cars into running condition for the unveiling while the club ensures this year's make is fully prepared. 

Next, the group will prepare for the Formula SAE competition at Michigan International Speedway from May 17 to 20. 

Edited by Sadie Buggle, Jasmine Kabiri and Piper Hansen.

Reach the reporter at and follow @BoykinsLauren on Twitter. 

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