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Purdue School of Engineering and Technology

Purdue School of Engineering and Technology

IUPUI again competing for the Purdue Grand Prix checkered flag

April 19, 2016

Work is continuing among students in the Motorsports Club on their go-kart for the 2016 Purdue Grand Prix. | LIZ KAYE / IU COMMUNICATIONS

Work is continuing among students in the Motorsports Club on their go-kart for the 2016 Purdue Grand Prix. | LIZ KAYE / IU COMMUNICATIONS

Students from the IUPUI motorsports program and other go-kart racing enthusiasts will compete April 23 in the 59th running of the Purdue Grand Prix go-kart race.

The campus is fielding two official teams from the motorsports club; an all-women's team, for the third straight year; and an independent team.

All four teams qualified for the 33-kart field on Saturday, April 16. Traditionally, qualifying fills 27 of the spots in the field, with 25-lap sprint races held on race day prior to the main event, filling out the remaining six slots. Each of the IUPUI teams qualified in the top 12.

The first sprint race begins at 11:30 a.m., the second at noon and the third at 12:30 p.m. The full 160-lap race will begin at 2:30 p.m.

IUPUI has fielded highly competitive teams for nearly a decade, since former student John Laski earned the checkered flag for his victory in the 2008 Grand Prix, held on Purdue's West Lafayette campus.

The motorsports program also earned championships in 2010 and 2011, when Justin Penix won back-to-back titles, and in 2012 when Blake Deister took the top spot.

This year's IUPUI teams feature drivers James Schnabel, Allison Schoch, Zach Robinson and Brenden Johnson. Schnabel will drive for the Motorsports Club's No. 1 team, starting in seventh place. Johnson is a rookie driving for the club's No. 2 team, which qualified in third place. Schoch will drive for the IUPUI Society of Women Engineers team, an all-women's effort competing for a third straight year, in the 12th position. Zach Robinson is the driver for the MGEP independent team, which includes mechanical engineering students; he qualified in 11th place.

Schnabel took fourth in last year's race, with Robinson seventh and Schoch 15th.