BAJA is the motorsports club of CEG. They specialize in building All-Terrain Vehicles (ATV). It is a club that challenges and develops the creative and design skills of the students. The club also gives a strong base to the students interested in the automobile industry.
Here is a short interview with the club’s President Mr. Prasanna and Vice President Mr. Vivek Nagarajan.
Q. When was the club started?
The club was started in 2007, as “Ad Inifnitum “. It was renamed as the “CEG Motorsports Club” in 2013.
Q. What is the primary mission of your club?
We build an ATV (All terrain vehicle), for this competition called BAJA SA India, which happens every year in Peethambur, Indore. Our ATVs are tested there under rigorous conditions. There are many stages in the event - when you clear the dynamic round, you go on to the static round, and so on.
The mission of BAJA SA India is to make better engineers for the future, and to train the students and expose them to what the industry expects from them in the future.
Q. Are juniors and their ideas given equal importance in the club?
BAJA comprises of students across different years – and all of them are given equal opportunities to contribute. In fact, there are only 4 seniors in the club currently – the rest are our juniors, and we give a lot of importance to their ideas.
Q. Where do you see the club in 10 years from now?
We are trying to capture top 5 spot on the BAJA SA India leaderboard. Ten years down the line, we hope that the CEG team is perceived as a top engineering team. We also aspire to be among the top teams involved in E BAJA (Electric BAJA), considering the promising future of electric vehicles and their pivotal role in sustaining the environment.
Q: Is the workspace given to you sufficient to work in?
Right now, it isn’t sufficient, but we make do with what we have. We are taking steps to improve it in all standards.
Q. What are some of the major challenges faced by your club?
The main problem is that our club is not an official one, which makes it difficult for registering in this competition, as only 25-30 teams are allowed to participate. We also have the SAE Collegiate Club, which we are trying to make the official club in our college, so it becomes easier to participate in events.
Also, there are currently only 2 women involved - we are making active efforts to involve more women in the club.
Q. Have you conducted workshops and if so, how was the response?
We conducted an ATV construction workshop at Vyuhaa .We had an overwhelming response from the participants, who found the session very informative and interesting. We wanted to give them a glimpse of how it would be working in our club. We plan on conducting similar workshops in the future.
Q. In the competitions, how good is your club compared to similar clubs from other colleges?
There is a round called virtual BAJA which we participate in, and we have interacted with similar teams out there, as of now I think there are 22 – 23 teams in Tamil Nadu. I’d say that we have a good team compared to the others and Sthink we can do well.
Q. What is the financial status of your club?
We think there is room for improvement in the management side, because building this ATV requires considerable financial outlay – in the tune of 6-7 lakh rupees. Our HOD has sanctioned us 50,000 rupees and we have Ford sponsoring 2 Lakhs, the rest of the money we share, so the club has to approach companies for sponsorship. The management of the club was started two years back, and we don’t have much experience compared to the other clubs.
Q. Has your club participated/won in intercollege events?
Yes, over the past 10 years, we have had quite a few achievements: in 2007 we won the Engineering Design award, the Trendsetter award in 2010, the Go Green award in 2012 and the First Dynamic Award in 2016. We also actively participate in many intercollege events.
Q. Do your professors actively participate in and contribute to your club activities?
Yes, they do! Dr. G.Nagarajan, our admissions director, and Dr. D.Ganesh, Assistant Professor in Internal Combustion Engineering are very active participants. Since there isn’t an Automobile Department in our college, we learn most of the concepts in vehicle dynamics and the other courses on our own. We approach our professors for the same and they are very receptive and happy to help.
The Guindy Times wishes BAJA the best of luck for their future endeavors.