Senior Hadley Chillura didn’t plan to design a race car wrap this year.
In fact, she didn’t go looking for the project at all. Design professor Jim Walker put Chillura up for a position for Valkyrie Intelligence, a local artificial intelligence and technology consulting firm. Valkyrie's need was specific and unique; they were on the hunt for someone to design a wrap for a race car they were sponsoring for November’s Formula 4 Championship race at Circuit of the Americas.
Although Chillura didn’t know much about racing before landing the job, she is no stranger to sports. She interned with Adidas this past summer in their United States division, where she designed jerseys for the National Hockey League in addition to other projects for football and baseball. As an avid board and action sports lover, it’s no surprise that Chillura's senior capstone project centers on skateboarding.
After her wrap design was finalized, the rest swiftly fell into place. The race car itself, named the Valkyrie Velocity, was finished quickly and the team traveled to Houston for a photo shoot, test run, and launch party. At Circuit of the Americas early last month, the design was on full display as 22-year-old Sugarland-based driver Kory Enders placed third in the F4 Championship race.
Chillura’s biggest takeaway from the experience was learning how and when to speak up as a freelance designer. She enjoyed the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of racing, a sport she wasn’t well versed in prior to the project. Throughout the process, she received valuable feedback from the team at Valkyrie and drivers alike who encouraged her to continue designing for sports. After graduation, she plans to pursue a career in sportswear design.
You can read Valkyrie's full recap of the Formula 4 race on their blog.