I wrote a book about my experience building and racing cars in college. It’s exciting! It’s amusing! It’s free! (for ebook download!)
RACECAR: Searching for the Limit in Formula SAE
By Matt Brown
Free: PDF | EPUB | iBooks | Kindle
中文简体字版 (Chinese): PDF | EPUB
日本語版 (Japanese): iBooks | Kindle | PDF | EPUB
In 2006, a small unavailing university auto racing team began building a racecar that would challenge the best engineering schools in the world. With fewer people and resources than any of the top competitors, the only way they were going to win was to push the limit, go for broke, and hope for more than a little luck.
By the time they got to the racetrack, they knew: In the fog of fierce competition, whether you win or lose, you learn the hardest lessons about engineering, teamwork, friendship, and yourself.
Hi, Matt. This is Terry from China. A brief self-introduction first, I graduated from Tongji University in Shanghai and when I was on campus I served for our university FSAE team. Since then I established a forum for all the FSAEers in China(cnFSAE.com) and I became one of the staff for FSAE China in 2010.
I found your blog accidentally and saw this book just now. You know, it is just amazing cuz no one here has ever thought of writing such kind of things. Most of the teams in China are at their outset, so I feel it would be great to expose them to a wider world with your book. Yet it is disappointing that the book is not available in Chinese iTunes Stores. I finally get it from Nook, you know, not a pleasant experience, haha. But I've got an idea, I think it would be extremely welcomed if it is translated into Chinese. I know it would be challenging, but also meaningful. If you are interested in this idea, would you pls talk with me later? My email address is admin@FSAE-China.com. Hope to hear from you soon.
This book is awesome, I am the brother of the so called "Wes" in the book. It has made me want to join FSAE any more.
I hope you mean even more, John. 😉
Matt: What a great read! My son is addicted to, er involved with the Colorado State FSAE team, and tells many of the same stories. They are very much in the same boat – underfunded, unapprecaited by the university, over worked, and of course not paid at all. They are gearing up for the big event in Lincoln NE in June, and I hope to be there for a few days to see it all first hand.
Your writing is excellent, and I REALLY enjoyed the book. You have a real talent, a great style, and I'd encourage you to pursue writing as a career! It's an amazing first effort for an engineer. Find other topics about which you have passion and give them the same treatment. I thought the first chapter was especially funny – made me laugh out loud! Maybe you could follow big race teams around and write about their world. Car and race fans all over would PAY for that!
Good luck and keep writing!
Did you coin "Why? Because racecar"?
Nope, it's a recurring theme on some car blogs.
I know this illness, so very very well.
Excited to read it all. (Great job on the taphandle too).
I can't believe I read this in one night. It kept me there glued to the screen. Thank you for sharing your experience man. It's everything I imagined, and more. I like your writing style too. Very entertaining.
Thanks, Matt. Ordered a hard copy and can't wait to have a read. Have an e28 M5 that I tinker with, but really hope to scrap together something more purpose built one day because racecar.
Matt, fantastic book!! As a freshman going into the FSAE program at Colorado state it was great to see all of the trials and tribulations you went through as a student. Heck maybe I'll even be able to follow in your steps and bring my school up to the front of the pack….. Wishful thinking right! Your book was hilarious and very will written, easily one of my favorites. Thank you for the great read, and most of all the inspiration!
Matt, I really enjoyed your book. This is one of the best racing books out there, especially any that cover actual race car development. It compares favorably with Mark Donohue's "Unfair Advantage".
Your book is spot on.
As an ex-FSAE addict from Clemson University, I relate so much to this.
I joined the team in 2004 and left in 2011. Even after graduation, I returned and helped the team at times. Overall I have 11 car builds under my belt.
I miss the many friendships and achievements over the years for our team. I enjoyed the lessons learned over the many struggles we had and today I appreciate and recognize the importance that each person on the team and each experience has left on me to become a stronger, better engineer and person.
FSAE is so amazing because, as you said, its racing like it was 50 years ago. That environment does not exist on any professional setting that I have seen so far. It is also an addiction that has surely taken its tolls on my health and personal life. But looking back at it, I would have not changed anything else I did.
The great memories and pictures on my wall, will always be a testimony to the most amazing college experience one can have.
Thanks for summing it up so nicely!
Hi, I ordered your book and was a little disappointed at first because I was expecting straight engineering. I'm glad I went ahead and read it because it was very entertaining and gave me a window into how such projects happen. Great book.
This book is amazing! I have always wanted to find a book written about racing from someone who actually experienced it! I’m hoping to get into Autocross and FSAE!
As a former alum of the University of Wisconsin Madison FSAE team, I got a good laugh out of your “Fucking Wisconsin” comments. We always said the same about Cornell. One year we put together a video montage of their car in various racing mishaps to the tune of Adam Sandler’s “Piece of Shit Car” and played it for our team recruitment events. Good times.
Hi, Matteo from UniTS Racing Team here, we started the team less than one year ago.
I bought a dead-tree-version of the book in spring and it’s already being passed to other team members, we are LOVING IT! You are a really, really, really good writer. We are already quoting you, and personally you boosted my motivation (I’m a full time worker and you just gave me that kick to go all-in in the project and delay studying, as I can afford it).
If I’ll get to drive the car in a competition, Supefast Matt will surely be on my helmet 😉
Wish you the best!