Scarborough UTC students reach national final in prestigious Formula 1 in Schools competition
Students at Scarborough UTC are on track for national success after stunning performances by two teams in the prestigious Formula 1 in Schools competition.
They are celebrating a remarkable sweep of a total of eight honours at the regional heat, and both teams will now represent the North of England in the UK final in October.
If successful, they could go through to the 2022 world finals – which the UTC reached in 2019 in Abu Dhabi.
The challenge involves designing and manufacturing the fastest miniature F1 racing car along a 20-metre (65ft) track, powered by compressed air. The 1/20th scale model cars are capable of travelling at about 45mph.
At the Racing Show for the North regional heats held digitally due to Covid, Scarborough UTC fielded year-10 team Zenith Racing and a sixth form team SBA Avidity Racing.
Zenith recorded a track time of 1.271 seconds and won various categories, going through to the national final.
Avidity did similarly well, and recorded a track time of 1.070 seconds.
The students taking part for Zenith were Adam Hodgson, Zane Craven, Louie Stephenson and Matt Dugdale.
The Avidity team comprised Missy McArdle, Alex Jenkin and Libby Atkin.
They were led by Rob Shephard, UTC Director of Engineering.
UTC principal Lee Kilgour said: “The clean sweep at the regional event for not one but two teams is fantastic, we are just elated. The students are fantastic ambassadors for the UTC.
“They were not only putting their engineering and design skills into action but learning skills such as project management and communication.
“It’s a rigorous assessment – they have to research and explain the manufacture of the car, submit a detailed portfolio and make a presentation.”
He added: “We are very proud of them and we look forward to the national stage, again flying the flag for Scarborough and its young people.
“We are now cementing our place as a Centre of Excellence for technical education.”
More than 40 teams are taking part in the event this year, comprising 227 students from countries around the world.
The students submitted minute technical details of their car design and creation and embedded video interviews of themselves in their presentation. They also had to raise sponsorship.
The UTC is also taking part in Girls on Track, a scheme to encourage more female students to consider careers in engineering and in motorsport, where only 2 per cent of females are involved.
Missy, Libby and Reanne Adnitt were chosen to visit Silverstone racing circuit for a Motorsport UK event to represent F1 in Schools to 40 primary school attendees.
The Avidity team received an extra compliment – they were invited to the Nissan factory at Sunderland where the car manufacturer recently announced plans for its £1bn electric vehicle gigafactory.
The students met Nissan VIPs who raced the team’s car on the track.
The UTC has a new F1 display at the college, with extra digital equipment, low-speed and flow visualisation wind tunnels and track reaction-testing. It also features illuminated graphics created by Avidity’s racing partners Blue Raptor Signs.
Vice-principal Rachel Fearnehough took the students to Nissan and assistant principal Natalie Griffiths took students to Silverstone.
Hana Hinton, a member of the UTC race team who took part in the Abu Dhabi finals, was selected to join the Unilever Williams Engineering Academy.