Here is a link to a facebook album showing the racecars and teams at the 2009 Formula SAE California intercollegiate engineering racecar competition that occurred June 17-21, 2009 at the Auto Club Raceway, Fontana CA.
Michael Ashby presents materials information in a practical format in his book Materials Selection in Mechanical Design.
This is a link to lecture notes that give an idea of his approach:
This 10-bar linkage is designed to drive a scissors movement in order to actuate a deployable structure. It was presented at the 2009 ReMar Conference in London. (UCI Robotics and Automation Lab)