UOW Motorsport crew that made history celebrates 20th anniversary

UOW Motorsport crew that made history celebrates 20th anniversary

Reunion celebrates anniversary of historic 2003 Formula SAE World Championship win

The University of Wollongong's (UOW) Faculty of Engineering and Information Sciences (EIS) celebrated UOW Motorsport's momentous 20th anniversary and a heartwarming reunion to mark the historic championship victory of 2003.

The journey began two decades ago when UOW Motorsport carved its name in university motorsport history by clinching the prestigious Formula SAE World Championship in Detroit, USA. It made UOW the first overseas team to claim the world championship from the USA.

To commemorate this outstanding achievement, the EIS faculty hosted a 20-year reunion, welcoming all UOW Motorsport alumni who have contributed to the program’s success over the years.

The event brought together past and present team members to share cherished memories and experiences, and strengthened the bonds made through a passion for motorsport and engineering.

Formula SAE is an international competition that requires students to design and build an open wheel, formula-style race car. The cars are then pitted against other local and international teams in a series of static and dynamic events, including design, cost, acceleration, one lap sprints and endurance events.

The event gives engineering students the opportunity to develop their skills in design, management, manufacturing, communication, research and business operations.

UOW Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice-President (Research and Sustainable Futures) Professor David Currow and Professor Geoff Spinks, Head of School School of Mechanical, Materials, Mechatronic and Biomedical Engineering were on hand to welcome past and present students and to help celebrate the team’s legacy.

Professor Currow congratulated the team members for their successes over the years and for the contributions they made to UOW.

“We are incredibly proud to celebrate UOW Motorsport’s two-decade anniversary and the historic championship reunion,” Professor Currow said.

“Congratulations to all UOW Motorsport alumni for their invaluable contributions in putting the University on the global map. Your achievements continue to inspire and exemplify the spirit of innovation we strive for at UOW.

“This remarkable milestone reflects the dedication, passion, and engineering excellence of our talented alumni who have shaped the team’s legacy over the years.”

Professor Spinks commended team members past and present for their skills and talent and for the many hours of hard work put in to make the program an ongoing success over so many years.

“UOW Motorsport’s legacy has been a symbol of excellence in engineering and innovation for the past two decades,” Professor Spinks said.

“Congratulations to all alumni who have played a part in shaping the team's history, including drivers, engineers, designers, and support staff, who joined in the festivities and reconnect with old friends and colleagues.

“We are immensely proud of their remarkable achievements, and this reunion provides a perfect platform to celebrate their accomplishments and inspire future generations of engineers and engineering enthusiasts.”

Evan Brown, Christopher Wood and Dr Craig McLauchlan, were the members of the 2003 championship team, and currently work at UOW.

“As students in in UOW Racing, we took our studies into the real world testing ourselves and our ability in the unforgiving arena of motorsport,” Dr McLauchlan said.

“We found in ourselves the ability to compete with and best students form some of the most prestigious universities form around the world.

“Being part of the team was a formative experience and I’m proud of the team’s achievement to this day.  What I am most proud of is the lifelong friends I have made, and the UOW Racing teams since who have also used the opportunity to take their engineering studies out of the classroom and into the world.”

Evan Brown said the 2003 championship success was largely anchored by the outstanding first UOW Racing team and greatly shaped his professional career and personal development.

“The team was formed in 2000, built the first UOW Formula SAE car in 2001, was successful in the Australian competition (FSAE-A) and competed in the FSAE World championship in 2002.

“I am immensely proud to have been a member of the UOW Formula SAE team. The opportunity to represent my country and shared success remains one of my greatest achievements to date.

“The experiences greatly shaped my professional career and personal development, while the friendships formed will remain bonds for life. Through my ongoing support of UOW Motorsport I hope to make a small contribution to an experience I gained so much from.

“The commitment of UOW staff, particularly EIS workshop technical officers and Faculty academic supervisors have been key to the longevity of the program. Their support of Formula SAE has significantly enriched the university experience of participating students for over 20 years.”

Christopher Wood said the win in 2003 by the team in Detroit could not have been achieved without the foundations laid down by the team formed in 2000.

“I'm incredibly proud to have been a member of the team and it was a formative experience.  Few other avenues provide such a platform to test everything you learn at university. 

“It's not just the Engineering, it's project management, time management, people management and the skills and lifelong friends I gained during that period stay with me to this day.

“I think one of the greatest achievements of the two early teams is their legacy lives on and continues to provide a great opportunity for young engineers to further their knowledge and apply their studies to the real world.”

About UOW Motorsport:

UOW Motorsport is a student-led team at the University of Wollongong, renowned for its exceptional engineering prowess and dedication to the motorsport industry. Over the years, the team has consistently achieved remarkable milestones, including the historic World Championship victory in 2003, which continues to inspire new generations of talented engineers and innovators.

More details about the program can be found here: https://uowmotorsport.com/

Main Pic: UOW Motorsport team 2003 winners: Christopher Wood, Evan Brown, Steve Selby, Kevin Quirk and Craig McLauchlan