Cates Racing

Cates Engineering sponsors the Cates Racing Team on both the NASA and SCCA racing circuits. The car is expertly driven by ourBrianNASApodium founder and principal, Brian Cates. While he races for fun and recreation, Brian's competitive spirit to win the race fuels his competitive nature to design the best. When he is on the track, Brian is always learning something that has the potential to further hone his skills as a structural engineer. He draws many parallels between racing and structural design. For example, both require careful analysis and consideration of various loads as well as forces of gravity, and lateral forces (wind and seismic).

In racing a driver is always concerned with the overall weight of the car. Lighter means faster. Minimizing the weight in the car gives you an edge on the track. The load of the car itself plus the weight of the driver and his gear, and the tire pressure must all be considered to achieve maximum benefit. Similarly, in construction each building design must account for both the static loads of the building and the dynamic loads that come from added weight outside of the building itself such as people and furniture. Lighter buildings are typically more cost efficient for the developer.

A race car driver must also be continually aware of forces beyond his control, like gravity and wind, to stay on the track. While he can't control those forces, he can prepare for their influence. Likewise, an engineer must carefully calculate gravity and lateral forces and their potential effect on the building. Less weight in a building equals not only a more cost efficient design, but also a lower seismic force.

This is just a small example of the interesting parallels between racing and structural design of buildings, but it is enough to get the drift. Brian-leading the pack

Drop by and visit the Cates Engineering Racing facebook page or the Cates Racing website for more information, stats, videos, and fabulous pictures.Brian Leads the Pack VIR Red Miata

2018 Schedule

NASA Mid-Atlantic

  • March 23-25: March Madness at VIR
  • April 21-22: Spring Rumble at Summit Point
  • May 18-20: Hyperfest at VIR
  • June 9-10: June Joust at Summit Point
  • July 21-22: Great Lakes Crossover Event at Pittsburgh Int'l Raceway
  • August 25-26: Dan Unkefer Memorial at VIR
  • October 6-7: Oktobarfast at VIR
  • November 10-11: Race Name TBD at Summit Point


  • April 13-15: SCCA VIR Spring Sprints Majors Tour at VIR
  • April 14-15: MARRS 1 w/NJRRS at Summit Point
  • April 28-29: Majors at Summit Point
  • May 12-13: MARRS 2 & 3 w/SARRC (Double) at VIR
  • June 2-3: MARRS 4 w/NJRRS Lightning Challenge at NJMP
  • June 16-17: MARRS 5 w/NJRRS at Summit Point
  • July 28-29: MARRS 6 at Summit Point
  • August 11-12: MARRS 7 w/NJRRS Summer Thunder on Thunderbolt at NJMP
  • September 1-3: MARRS 8 & 9 Labor Day Double at Summit Point
  • October 6-7: MARRS 10 at Summit Point


Mazda Heritage

  • March 29-31: Road Atlanta Grand Prix at Road Atlanta
  • May 17-20: 2018 Spring Vintage Festivalat Road America
  • June 21-24: 2018 Vintage Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio at Mid-Ohio
  • September 20-23: 2018 Heacock Classic Gold Cup at VIR
  • Brian's Mazda Race CarRed Miata