Two students from the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources at West Virginia University are gearing up for internships with Rooster Hall Racing, in Louisa, Virginia.
Mark Ziegler, a mechanical and aerospace engineering major from Glen Allen, Virginia, and Justin Moser, a mechanical engineering major from Lorton, Virginia, will have the unique opportunity to travel the country with RHR participating in all six touring car races in the 2018 Pirelli World Challenge Series.
The RHR team and driver Johan Schwartz, who recently set the Guinness World Record for the longest continuous car drift in a BMW, will rely on the student interns to acquire performance data during each race from their WVU-branded BMW M235i touring car. Between races, the students will analyze and compare the collected data with driver feedback to make adjustments in an attempt to increase the vehicle’s performance throughout the season.
“The students will be fully integrated into the Rooster Hall Racing team and will have the opportunity to gain valuable experience in the world of professional racing,” said Scott Wayne, associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering. ”These internships are an opportunity for two of our best students to work with and learn from a highly experienced racing team and to bring that knowledge and experience back to WVU.”
Ziegler and Moser are both seasoned team members of WVU Formula SAE, a student design competition that encompasses all aspects of the automotive industry including research, design, manufacturing, testing, developing, marketing, management and finance.
They both agree that working with the team has given them a strong foundation that will make them successful during their internship.
“Being a part of the WVU FSAE team has helped me gain a better understanding of how race cars work from an engineering standpoint,” said Ziegler. “In addition to teaching me about vehicle dynamics and how to evaluate vehicle performance, working with the team has given me the tools to make engineering decisions based on that data we collect. Being able to represent the University and especially the WVU FSAE team with a WVU-sponsored car is very exciting.”
The student interns won’t be the only ones to reap the benefits of the newly established partnership. Crew members will make several visits to WVU to meet with engineering students and to help the student racing team improve their car design for the 2019 FSAE competition.
“Working with RHR will give us invaluable experience that we can use in the future,” said Moser. “The additional experience that Mark and I will bring back to WVU after our internship will help set the WVU FSAE team apart from the rest of the competition.”
Throughout their internship, Ziegler and Moser will be working to promote the WVU FSAE team on a national level in hopes of increasing sponsorship and fundraising opportunities for the team. RHR will provide the students with WVU-branded display tents during each race so that they can conduct interviews and publicity events to highlight their experience.
The students will kick off their season opener on March 23-25, with the Grand Prix of Texas at the Circuit of the Americas Raceway in Austin, Texas. All 2018 TCR events will be live streamed on the Pirelli World Challenge website as well as in post-produced highlight telecasts on the CBS Sports Network.