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International competitors race to sign up for Baja SAE Kansas

November 08, 2010 12:00AM

Flags from the eight countries that will be represented at next May's Baja SAE Kansas competition hang behind one of PSU's baja vehicles. In total, 22 international teams will compete.

W ith

We're excited to see what could result from having so much international participation. "
~ Trent Lindbloom, automotive technology professor and co-organizer of Baja SAE Kansas
plans for the 2011 Baja SAE Kansas competition well underway, the event has already filled up with teams who will travel to Pittsburg State University to compete.

And some of them will be coming from far, far away.

At the competition scheduled for May 26-29, 2011, 22 international teams from all corners of the world have reserved a spot. The teams will be arriving from the countries of France, Argentina, Canada, Mexico, Israel, Brazil, Venezuela, and India. Seventy-eight teams will travel to PSU from within the United States.

Trent Lindbloom, a professor in the Department of Automotive Technology and one of the organizers of the event, said the international commitments for the event have been impressive, and that this is the first time he has heard of some of these countries being represented at a Baja SAE competition in the United States.

"It surprised me to have so much international response," said Lindbloom, who has been participating in Baja SAE competitions for the past 20 years. "As far as showcasing the College of Technology and what we have to offer, this gives us a wonderful opportunity. There could be some neat interaction between our students and the international competitors."

The international teams will spend a longer length of time in Pittsburg than the domestic teams. Because they must ship their vehicles separately (usually in a disassembled form), they arrive early to reassemble them and stay late after the competition to take them apart again before shipping the pieces back.

"Ultimately, this could be a great recruitment tool for PSU," Lindbloom said. "Word of mouth is a powerful thing, and we are far more economical than other places in the United States. We're excited to see what could result from having so much international participation."

---Pitt State---

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