Ferrari World Abu Dhabi and Yas Marina Circuit will host 33 teams of F1 in Schools World Finalists from 22 countries next month when they congregate in Abu Dhabi for the eighth F1 in Schools World Finals. One of these teams will be Team Rush from Robert May's School, Odiham, Hampshire.
The students are putting the final touches to their F1 scale model cars, rehearsing their presentations and finishing their portfolios ready for three days of intense competition in the pursuit of the Bernie Ecclestone F1 in Schools World Champions trophy and City University, London scholarships.
Rachel Pluthero, Team Manager for Team Rush, says of their preparations, “Currently team Rush are pulling together all the work they've done over the last year. Our aim when we came together as a team was to win the World Final and we feel we're getting closer each day. Our car has been designed and tested and is now into the stages of manufacturing, right on schedule. The team is very organised and great at working to deadlines which has enabled us to keep on track, leaving our contingency period free to bring in some new, last minute ideas. Overall the team is working hard to make everything perfect ready to win the World Final at Abu Dhabi in a few weeks time!
“The project has taken many months from start to finish” says Rachel. “We spend roughly 7 - 15 hours a week because we aim to make all of the car parts we have designed to the highest standard possible. Our final tests were done only last week, pushing the car development as far as the time frame would allow, hopefully shedding a few of those all-important milliseconds for the racing at the World Finals! We can safely say that we have a car with input from six of the best young engineers in the country. From the way the car is being modelled, to the innovative use of the aerofoils, we are pushing boundaries within the F1 in Schools competition like never before.”
Of the trip to Abu Dhabi Rachel adds, “It's difficult to know what to expect from the World Finals; everyone we've spoken to says it's an experience of a lifetime and we certainly hope that's true! Over the past year we've all become such good friends that spending 10 days abroad together is going to be something special in itself. One thing we do expect is that the competition is going to be fierce. The standard set by previous World Finals has always been really high and we're expecting the same this year. We're fully expecting some emotional moments as well because no matter what happens the World Final, in many ways, marks the end of a journey for us as a team.”
The F1 in Schools World Finals 2012 is being held from 29th to 31st October to coincide with the 2012 FORMULA 1 ETIHAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX, will be a life-changing experience for all the students and for many it will be their first overseas trip. Countries competing at the World Finals for the first time include Greece, Austria, Mexico and Jordan.
F1 in Schools is the largest, and most successful, educational initiative in the world, with 40 countries operating the programme, from Kenya to Oman, Kazakhstan to Vietnam and many more. The power of Formula 1 and the challenge of designing, building, testing, and racing a miniature F1 car of the future has reached over 20 million students, with over one million involved each year from over 20,000 schools.
Andrew Denford, Founder and Chairman, F1 in Schools, looks ahead saying, “We're just over a month away from staging our eighth F1 in Schools World Finals and I'm sure all the teams are getting very excited and nervous about their trip to Abu Dhabi. The goal for every team competing will be to lift the Bernie Ecclestone World Champions trophy above their heads and I know it will be the toughest race to the chequered flag for all these students. Their journey, whether they win or lose, will be an enriching experience, with the peers they will meet from different cultures, religions, and lifestyles, as well as the life skills they will acquire from working closely in a team and pushing themselves to the limit in their efforts to win.”
“F1 in Schools at its heart is designed to engage students in the key learning areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) which are valuable assets for future careers in many sectors of industry. The World Finals deliver so much more than this for students and although they will have excelled with their commitment and dedication to producing the best model F1 car possible, they will also be amazing ambassadors for their country and take home one of the most unique, and special memories, of their life. Abu Dhabi is set to change the lives of all of these young people and we look forward to a great week there.”
The F1 in Schools World Finals teams, with three to six members in each, have won through from their National Final and in many countries, they will have had to win a Regional Final along the way, to represent their county at this international event. 6 of the teams will be collaborations, with two teams from different countries combining their skills and presenting themselves as one team to compete with other collaborations and national champions, an opportunity offered to each National Finals' runners-up team. The collaboration teams communicate by virtual technologies such as CISCO WebEx before finally meeting each other for the first time when they arrive in Abu Dhabi.
The F1 in Schools World Finals take place with the assistance of a host of sponsors and supporters including Yas Marina Circuit, Ferrari World, Etihad Airways, Pirelli, Hexagon Metrology, The IET, and City University London.
F1 in Schools team to represent England and are set to take on the rest of the world..
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