BUDDING engineers are aiming to be the driving force behind their school’s attempts to win a gruelling endurance motor race.
An eight-strong team of bright sparks from Manor College of Technology, in Owton Manor Lane, Hartlepool, has spent the past few months creating its own battery-powered electric car to compete in the Greenpower championships later this summer.
The pupils from Year 9 and 10 have completed work on the car chassis and are now working with students from Hartlepool College of Further Education to make the body shell as aero-dynamic as possible.
When complete, the battery-powered car will have one seat, a set of brakes, a horn, wing mirrors and a top speed of 20mph.
It is the first time that the pupils have taken part in the competition, which sees teams from across the North-East race around the Croft Circuit, near Darlington, for four hours.
Each team has four drivers and they have to pit after an hour to swap drivers and car batteries.
The Manor pupils are competing in the Formula 24 category, which is open to pupils aged between 11 and 16.
The winner is the team that completes the most laps in the four hours.
Paul Moffat, assistant headteacher at the school, said the children have enjoyed the experience of creating their own car and are looking forward to taking on other schools.
The school has also appealed for firms in Hartlepool to come forward with sponsorship to help the pupils’ dream of winning become a reality.
Mr Moffat said: “This has certainly sparked a lot of interest from the pupils which is great because we wanted to encourage more interest in the stem subjects, which are science, technology, English and maths.
“We used this as a hook to get people interested in the engineering industry and it seems to have worked.
“The pupils are now working with students from the FE College on the manufacture of the body shell because one of the key aims is to make it as light as possible.
“We are looking for any companies, such as body shops or garages, that would be interested in sponsoring us or to spray the car.
“We also need boiler suits and full face crash helmets for the pupils.”
The Greenpower Education Trust is a charity that promotes engineering as a rewarding career to anyone aged between nine and 25.
The competition is due to take place on Wednesday, July 6.
To sponsor the team or to provide equipment email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the school on (01429) 288338.