Downhill runs keep leading to upward trends for members of Red River College’s Concrete Toboggan Race Team, who picked up a pair of awards and a top-quarter ranking at the annual competition in Vancouver last month.
The nine-member team took home a Spirit Award and Best Steering Design honours at the 39th annual Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race, where members finished fifth out of 21 teams representing some of the country’s top engineering schools.
The showing improves on the team’s ninth-place finish in 2012, and shows how far they’ve come since ranking last in their tournament debut the year prior.
The Toboggan Race, a showcase of innovation and engineering spirit, draws teams of post-secondary students from all over Canada, encouraging them to focus on materials and structure knowledge, innovative concrete and mechanical design, and teamwork. Entrants must design and construct a five-person toboggan with a roll bar (capable of withstanding an upset at 75-km/hour), and a running surface composed entirely of concrete, while maintaining a total weight of less than 300 pounds.
All toboggans are subject to a safety inspection before being raced, and are judged on the basis of their concrete, frame, steering and brake design, as well as race-day results and team spirit. This year’s sled was built completely by students in the Construction Management and Safety Programs, with a concentration on safety, overall functionality and sustainability. Every aspect of the toboggan was designed to allow for adjustability based on race day conditions.
With an all-aluminum frame and steering system, aluminum and steel brake, concrete skis and fabric aesthetics, the toboggan is 100% recyclable and weighed in as one of the lightest sleds at 228 lbs. On race day at Mount Seymour, the team backed up their design by being one of only 11 toboggans to qualify for the final slalom competition and finished fifth overall.
Click here for more info on the Concrete Toboggan Race.