The same group that is working on the updates to design comp has also been doing some tinkering with Raceday. And for those of you that are worried, no we are not changing the rules, we wouldn’t touch that with an eleven foot pole, but we hope some of the flow will be improved a bit this year (pending the usual weathery culprits of course).

As the buggy fanatics that we know you are, we feel like you deserve to know as much as we do. A lot got covered in the last meeting, so this is a meaty post. If you need to, wait till you’re more hungry, or take in a bit now and take the rest home in a doggy bag to eat later.
Of course, we’re still a few weeks out, so nearly all of this is potentially subject to change.


In an attempt to organize the notes that I took, I’m going to go as chronologically as I can from the perspective of the races themselves:

  • First off, neither Chrysler nor 4moms will be sponsoring this year due to scheduling conflicts of some key people. They have been great to us over the last 2 years and we hope that we can connect again in the future.
  • godaddy-logoIn their place, talks with GoDaddy have been in the works and though Danica Patrick so far hasn’t confirmed, there has been talk of their NASCAR car being present around design comp and the course. They also have been interested in throwing a bbq for the teams after all the races, but just like Danica, this hasn’t been confirmed.
  • Early on in the planning effort, there were rumors of construction that would potentially be happening in the gym during design comp. I am here to tell you today that those rumors are false and we will have the entire gym like we do every year.
    • Related to this, buggy books will again be on sale with a likely sponsorship from us here at the BAA. With an added twist, these books will contain the day 1 preliminary heats which may be decided as early as the week after spring break.
  • logofinal.aiBefore the races even start, WRCT is planning a 2 hour pre-race broadcast at 7pm on thursday night. They want to get alumni and students to come on and talk about different aspects of the sport from as many angles as possible. These speakers will also not be the same people as who will be in the booth for the races to get a larger variety of voices. This is something that used to run in the past, but no one could remember the last year that it was officially run. If you remember these broadcasts hopefully you can help excite people about it, ’cause we’re pretty excited!
  • Carnival Committee has been reaching out to anyone that has fun old buggy photos to put in their carnival history museum, the location to which hasn’t yet been revealed (to my knowledge).
  • Tom’s talk will be held in Giant Eagle Auditorium, so make sure you sign up if you haven’t already!


As for the races themselves, not much will be changing to prelims, but Finals are looking to get a bit of a revamp, this being a special year for carnival and all:

  • For your listening pleasure, the dream team is coming back to broadcast for you on raceday comprised of these wonderful people:
    • Will Weiner (WRCT)
    • Andy Bordick (Pike)
    • Mark Estes (ESP)
    • Rachel Johnson (former SigEp Driver and Design Comp Chair)
  • The prelim races themselves will have little to no change aside from a possible new view over the start line to help clear up those pesky false start allegations.
  • This Truss over the start line will add the primary benefit of a closed loop speaker system connected only to the starter so any call for the start of the next race will be heard loud and clear for everyone around the base of hill 1 and won’t be drowned out by the WRCT broadcast.
  • The Lead Truck Auction that we know it has been getting a very critical eye from the higher ups for safety concerns and could be axed all-together. This hasn’t been totally confirmed, but it’s not looking good. As the greatest source of donations for the BAA, we might have to start looking for a new way to fundraise and support our efforts to you and the students.
  • Since Phoenix is coming back again as our timers this year, now with a year under their belts we hope that we can better incorporate their timing capabilities into the broadcast. Ideally we can hopefully sync the timer and video which will put the official time up on the jumbotrons and speed up tape reviews significantly.
  • Because it is the 100th year of carnival, there are two planned Grudge Matches that will be taking place. PiKA vs Spirit has already been announced and it should be a great match, our second Grudge Match is yet to be announced.
  • These races will be full course races with current buggies and drivers and held at the end of day 2 after the men’s finals. This extra time at the end of the day will allow tape reviews to happen on location and have everything finished up by the time roads are clear.
  • With everything done by then, awards could happen immediately after. However, there was concern among the chairmen that splitting with the booth awards would be too straining on their org, so awards ceremony will still be on midway either just before or just after booth awards.

That’s all I’ve got for now, put your comments or questions below and be sure to share this with all your buggy friends so everyone know’s what’s up.

11 thoughts on “Carnival Plans – Raceday”

  • Just a friendly reminder that Rachel Johnson was also Sweepstakes Assistant Chair last year in addition to her other credentials of driving for SigEp and organizing Design Comp (twice I think)

  • Interesting comment on the lead car. I the dark ages, before cmuTV had every inch of the course covered from several angles, it was the only way to see the action. THus, some poor soul ( occasionally me) had to try to keep a large old- school video camera aimed at the buggies. The tape of such, used to review infractions and other events. The lead car also stayed much closer to the action that it has of late.

    As of now, it serves to let people know that buggies are coming but offers no real view of the action at all. It will not be missed if it is gone as long at flaggers and the people in the chute stay alert.

    • The lead truck is still planned to exist as I understand it, they just don’t feel that having an auction winner sit in the truck is a necessary person, and might not let us have someone sit there to watch the races.

  • just noticed that my org is listed as (ESP). while not correct ( would be Zoo, Sigma Nu, SN or signu depending on your era). , I love it.

  • Rachel Johnson says:

    HAH! This is actually the first I’ve been told I will be a buggy announcer… Thanks for the heads up. :) can’t wait for carnival.

      • Those announcers are a preliminary list. The buggy announcers are not finalized yet. We will hopefully have our final slate ready by the end of this week. Sorry for the miscommunication!

        • The announcer selections have been released. There is a goodly crew selected for the broadcast. A blend of solid performers from the past (Andy and Will) and some new folks who know buggy (Rachel and others) . I had a shot as well but cannot attend (hate it when work gets in the way of my fun). We are in good hands.

  • Hasn’t it been almost a decade since anyone fell out of the lead truck? The fun police strike again, I guess.

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