February 15, 2012
Civil engineering students slide into first at the Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race
A team of civil engineering students slid into first place at the Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race in Calgary, Alberta from February 8-12.
The Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race (GNCTR) is a national engineering competition that challenges students to use their technical knowledge to design and build concrete toboggans. The event brings together over 400 students from top engineering programs across the country each year. Teams must present a complete engineering project including financing, design, materials selection, and a written report. Teams compete in a number of categories including shortest race time, highest speed, shortest stopping distance, and overall design. The results from all categories are combined to determine the overall champion.
In addition to the first place overall finish, the Ryerson team was named the overall champion and won in the following categories: fastest run time, top speed, best performance, and most original and innovative design. The team also captured the Holcim Award, worth $1,500, for their sustainable design of the toboggan, which they built using recycled materials donated by neighbourhood construction sites such as Maple Leaf Gardens. The team also ensured that this year’s toboggan can be recycled for use in future competitions.
Ryerson has a tradition of placing well in the GNCTR. In the past five years, Ryerson student teams have won a number of awards in this competition, including three second-place overall finishes from 2007-2009, and third place overall finish in 2011. This year marks the first time that Ryerson has placed first overall.
The 2012 Ryerson team was led by team captain George Varavin and co-captains Alivia Alaica, Kevin Grant, Ramesh Khatiwada, Bradley Maguire, Julianne Meijaard and Peter Ragheb. Team members include: Adam Alaica, Irfan Ahmad, Nicholas Bellissimo, Kamil Boruszkowski, Chrisel Brako, Adam Casinelli, Navee Jayaseelan, Evan Klasios, Eugene Kogan, Paul Kwiczala, Jennifer Lu, Brandon Medeiros, Ali Naeem, Fatemeh Niroomand, Stephen Plesko, Behnam Sarafina, Danielle Suarez Vickers, Sean Sulduz, Waleed Sultan, Sailaivasan Vettivelu, Elena Vlasceanu, and Jimmy Xu. Domenic Valle was the team’s technical advisor while Dr. Medhat Shehata was the faculty advisor.