Combustion Vehicle Team Leads
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Tyler Watts

Team Captain

Tyler is a senior in mechanical engineering from San Antonio, Texas. As the Team Captain of the Combustion Team, his duties include managing and assuring the completion of high-level design, manufacturing, and operations goals, as well as trying desperately to hang on to what little sanity he has left. He spends most of his free time googling “what is a car, please help” in spells of desperation.  His biggest personal imprvement goal for this year is to laern to spell better during public leads mweetings.

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Venkat Nair

Operations Lead

Venkat is a junior Economics major pursuing a minor in Finance. As the Operations lead of the Combustion team, he deals with handling Corporate Relations, Treasury, Public Relations and Events. He spends most of his time wondering why building a car is supposed to be so expensive, but when he is not thinking about the costs of building a car, he enjoys playing soccer.  He’s a self-proclaimed expert on “dealing with engineers,” whatever that means.

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Sam Finley

Dynamics Lead

Sam Finley is a 4th year Mech E student from Austin, Texas. As the Dynamics Lead, he oversees the design of the car’s suspension and handling characteristics. Believe it or not, he has other personality traits besides liking cars and engineering, but listing them would probably make him sound more boring and less like a cool racecar engineer.  He'd also like to make it known that he drives a Miata and it does indeed work again.

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Jonathan Parra

Chief Engineer

Jonathan is a senior mechanical engineering student from “the Dallas area.” As the Chief Engineer, he is responsible for setting and ensuring all high-level design and manufacturing goals are met. His search history most notably includes, “how to build car” and “what to do when half your leads quit 3 weeks into the design cycle,” inevitably leading to him downloading a trojan for mining bitcoin. On an unrelated note, if you’re looking for some ABEC 9 Super Precision ball bearings, let him know.

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Nigel Ling

Manufacturing Lead

Nigel is a junior Aerospace Engineering student from Houston, Texas. As the Manufacturing Lead, he is in charge of overseeing all manufacturing operations on the Combustion Team. He might like machines more than humans. He said he would come up with something else to put here later, but he’s too busy trying not to fail differential equations for a third time.

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Alyson Jia

Powertrain Lead

Alyson is a junior chemical engineering student from Cedar Park, Texas. As the powertrain lead, she spends most of her time working with the engine of the car, and it's a miracle she hasn’t been burned by the exhaust yet. In her free time, she enjoys making weird noises in an attempt to imitate her predecessor. Is very small, still very dangerous. Do not be fooled.

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Ray Tin

Composites Lead

Ray is a senior mechanical engineering student from Houston, Texas. As the composites lead, he’s guaranteed cancer within the next 20-30 years, depending on if the aero lead finishes the undertray design in time.  With his current progression rate through the ME degree (and the aero lead’s design progression rate), he may even still be here when the cancer hits him.

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Francisco Fabregat 

Electronics Lead

Francisco is a junior Electrical and Computer Engineering student from San Antonio, Texas. He is in charge of all the electronics on the car. This isn’t really that important though, so enough said. He also has a mild addiction to Diet Coke™.

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Gautam Vachaspati

Body Lead

Gautam Vachaspati is a second year mechanical engineering student from Keller, Texas (aka “the Dallas area”). He is in charge of managing the aerodynamics, ergonomics, and frame of the car. These subsystems have the challenge of integrating other systems’ components and influencing factors like weight, downforce, drivability, and safety. Gautam has the challenge of clinging onto whatever sanity and hairline he has left. He also enjoys listening to music in an attempt to forget why he ever joined this club in the first place.

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Meet The Team