Team steers its way to victory in F1 challenge

Matthew Johnson, Alex Livingston, Amber Ward and Emma Masters celebrate their win.
Matthew Johnson, Alex Livingston, Amber Ward and Emma Masters celebrate their win.

A team is revving up for the national final which will pit their engineering skills against the best.

Byron Sixth Form College at St Bede’s in Peterlee will travel to Silverstone next month to compete in the F1 in Schools technology challenge after a scooping a place in the regional heat as North East champions.

The team's car prepares to go up against another at the regional finals.

The team's car prepares to go up against another at the regional finals.

They hope to make it through to the world final, which will be held in Singapore or Malaysia, where a trophy named after Bernie Ecclestone, the former chief executive of the Formula One Group.

The school’s Technically Viral team competed against 34 others from the region at a competition held at Nissan to win their place in the next round, impressing judges with their design, manufacture and race time of their own miniature car.

Year 13 student Matthew Johnson, 18, and year 12s Alex Livingston, Amber Ward and Emma Masters, all 17, had to raise funds through sponsorship and work with companies, with support offered by NSK, K Home International and the NAC Group as they put together their plans.

They were also assessed on their knowledge of the engineering involved in producing their cars, discussed computer fluid design for wind tunnel testing and had to lead a presentation.

They did fantastically well and to compete against 34 teams and make it through shows how strong their work was.

Gary Glover

Their win also saw them awarded £1,750 to put towards their project as it progresses.

Gary Glover, the school’s head of technology, said: “They did fantastically well and to compete against 34 teams and make it through shows how strong their work was.

“They were overjoyed when they won and they all know what if they win, they could get a scholarship to study in London.

“It’s all based on around the STEM subjects, so science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and I know some of them want to continue to study those.”

The Technically Viral team with sponsors from NSK.

The Technically Viral team with sponsors from NSK.

The school also had a second team in the regional heat.

Year 10s Cameron White, twins Isobel and Olivia Fishwick, Georgia Scobell, Ewan Archer and Archie Napier, all 14, worked as a development team in this year’s challenge.

Anyone who would like to add their sponsorship to the project can contact the school on (0191) 587 6220 or can find out more via the project’s website http://technicallyviral.weebly.com/