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The 2023 Baja SAE Competition

Wraps for the Season

Case Western Reserve University 2023 Baja victory


Mission accomplished! The Society of Automotive Engineers’ 2023 Baja competition ended Sept 10th at the American Honda Motors Inc. in Nashport, Ohio, after a 4-day slugfest that saw 80 teams battle for top honors in events like design, acceleration, maneuverability, endurance & more.

This program, hosted by SAE International, challenges engineering students to design & build a single-seat, all-terrain sporting vehicle that can withstand the harshest conditions. Throughout a yearlong, three-part competition, participating young men and women across the U.S. put their engineering & business acumen to the test, coming together in true team fashion.

As GMN Bearing USA, we are a proud sponsor of several motorsports teams, offering our precision sprag clutches for use in their 4WD systems. And these teams did not disappoint, putting GMN parts through their paces.

Racing Flags

The Results

Baja SAE Ohio – Nashport, Ohio, Sept. 6 – 10, 2023

In the Nashport, Ohio, mash-up, our sponsees cranked up the power & gave it the gas with Case Western Reserve University’s Motorsports team earning the First Place Overall finish. The team’s tenaciousness showed as each event saw their vehicle consistently perform better as their design was carefully honed to incorporate important learnings that gave them the edge they needed to take top billing.

According to Ian Dyke, Drivetrain Lead for CWRU Motorsports, GMN clutches helped make the difference.

“The GMN Clutches have been a pivotal part of our front wheel drive system since we have integrated them. They allow us to save a significant amount of weight and eliminate parasitic effects through our system by simplifying and optimizing it for our Forward-Drive-Only powertrain, and I think you can see what benefits that brings to performance by the competition placements we're getting with them,” Dyke said.

“As components themselves, they have been bomb-proof in performance -- the reliability that they have had through all the conditions we've faced them with has been pretty astounding.”

(Happy to hear it, CWRU!)

CWRU Baja team gets dirty

The Nashport competition also offered other notable performances of GMN sponsees. Both McGill University and Johns Hopkins University baja teams clocked in 8th and 12th overall, respectively. Certainly, an outstanding showing for such a large group of competitors!

McGill University 2023 Baja team

Baja SAE Oregon – Washougal, Washington, May 31-June 3, 2023

Another GMN sponsee this year is North Carolina State University's Pack Motorsports Baja team participated in the first two events of the competition held earlier this year. In the Oregon competition, the team placed 12th overall and 6th in acceleration.

This was the first year for the team using GMN 400 Series sprag clutches, and according to Pack Motorsports team member, John Hill, the clutches stood up to the punishment.

“Out of the countless hours of testing, and competing, we experienced no issues whatsoever with our 4WD system,” Hill said.  

Teammate William Godkin said the team plans on using the GMN FE 400 clutches again for next year’s competition. “We massively appreciate GMN's support through providing FE 400 series clutches, expert support, and advice to help guide us in our first time using such components,” he said. “The clutches had outstanding performance.”

North Carolina State University 2023 Baja team


From everyone here at GMN Bearing USA, congratulations to all the teams who participated in this year’s events!

We’re proud to be part of this important educational endeavor.

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