Hello! It’s me, Javier, I’m back to give an update on our sponsorship and car progress. Earlier last week we announced on social media that our Platinum Sponsors, BAE Systems, are continuing to collaborate with us throughout the 20/21 season, this is massive news for the team as the multinational arms, security and aerospace company which provides us with sponsorship, manufacturing aid and expertise was once again willing to support our F1 in Schools journey. This collaboration was incredibly valuable in our first season, we would not have been so successful without them.
Finding a sponsor like BAE Systems which can not only provide sponsorship but other forms of support is immensely beneficial for a team wanting to succeed in this competition. We gain the advice and manufacturing abilities of industry experts and also receive significant sponsorship from this deal, making the partnership essential. It is important for us to give back to them in the best way possible, for us that is using their generous sponsorship to reinvest in our community.
So... how to do it for yourself? Eclipse’s top tip for gaining sponsorship is to go local, so many teams try to get the big companies, such as car makers, household brands etc. Look local, many companies want to inspire the next generation of engineers/entrepreneurs. We went with a 3 stage approach, a letter, a follow up email, and finally a phone call. This was A LOT of work with lots and lots of ‘no’ responses, but eventually the work paid off. Be sure to have a detailed return on investment plan, let the companies know what you will do for them as a result of gaining their money, services and/or expertise.
Tom and I are seeking advice from BAE Systems engineers about various parts of the car we are looking to develop. The joy of having external advice is that they set deadlines that you have to stick to. This week they asked us to produce a multipage document with information, engineering drawings and diagrams of various concepts. They will in turn give their opinions and advice on which concepts could actually be manufactured. We hope to meet with them soon and finalise some concepts to test when we return to school early on next month…
UP NEXT: Maisie will provide you with an update on the development of the teams verbal presentation skills and our pit display collaboration.
Hi, Maisie here, this week has been a little slower for us, being from the South-East of England the snow is a novelty and we wanted to take the opportunity to be out in it having fun! I thought I would use this post to update you on what we have been up to with our verbal presentation and pit display.
For our verbal presentation we realised from judges feedback that we needed to develop. We made contact with Marcus Orlovsky, (who is a motivational and educational speaker who has worked with TEDx) who has agreed to help us develop our skills. A video of Marcus giving a talk on TEDx is below:
The first thing he has taught us in one of our online meetings is be confident in what you are talking about, if it is personal to you, then you will be able to discuss more confidently. We now have individual meetings with him to develop our confidence in talking to new people. As a team we will need to present a full verbal presentation to him in a few weeks time to see if we are better than our first attempt. The biggest issue for us here is being available for our meetings whilst still having live lessons…..
After our meeting with a company that has agreed to build our pit display (if needed), we are still waiting for them to get back to us. This is something we have realised in our time in the competition, it can be frustrating waiting for responses and at what point do you keep nagging without seeming rude? I guess that is a life skill to develop, to keep the sponsors happy but still get things done on time! We have ideas, we have designs, but without their expert advice we do not know if they are possible; this is the problem with outsourcing………..
We will not stop over half term next week, we will continue to have our online meetings, developing and virtually testing the car designs as well as trying to meet with our partners. All go for an F1 in Schools team!
UP NEXT: Javier will provide you with an update on our sponsorship situation and on the development of our car.
Hi everyone, it's Javier from Eclipse, back again to give an update on our car developments. After a busy last week on the enterprise side of the project it was time for the design engineers, Tom and I, to step up and get working.
Our car performed pretty well at Nationals, and although it was not our fastest ever time we were pretty chuffed considering the circumstances, more importantly, both cars made it to the end of the track in one piece, having never been tested, phew!
We decided that we will not design an entirely new car, but to work with what we have and analyse areas to develop and hopefully improve track time. Our top tip here about any car designing is make sure the car meets all regulations. That is actually more important to your overall score than getting the fastest time (that is just a bonus!).
Having looked at areas to develop (the wings and wheel systems), we have produced CAD models and hope to discuss if they are possible with a company we may outsource manufacture to. We will of course analyse the new ideas in CFD and hopefully, go back into school for physical testing to see if these parts perform as the virtual analysis shows. We will keep you posted how we get on...
On another note a former student of our school, Stephanie Turner, always wanted a job linked to her favourite sport, Formula One, but didn't feel she would ever have the opportunity. She now works as a presenter promoting diversity in motorsport encouraging a greater participation from women and underrepresented groups.
The first link is to a selection of webinars hosted by inspirational women in motorsport, the second are interviews hosted by Jenni Gow about possible careers in the world of motorsport media.
Stephanie wanted you all to know that this kind of thing was not around when she was at school, and was completely unaware that she would ever get the opportunity to have a successful career linked to motorsport.
She hopes some of you take the time to have a look and maybe be inspired.
https://corp.formula1.com/women-of-f1-to-deliver-inspirational-talks-with-motorsport-uks-girls-on-track-programme/ - Steph will be the host in some of these sessions
UP NEXT: Maisie is going to provide us all with an update on the progress of our Pit Display and our Verbal Presentation
Hello! I’m back, it’s Maisie from Eclipse. This week has been busy to say the least. We had meetings with a potential pit display manufacturer, bearing suppliers and sponsors, all alongside our regular team meetings. Our teacher has told us that this competition is like building a house, the foundations take the longest amount of time and effort to produce, but no one actually sees it, however, you cannot produce great buildings (or F1 in Schools outcomes) without them. We think we know what he means...!
It does kind of sum up this week, we have been sorting and planning without actually having anything to show for our efforts. We do however have a clear plan of where we are going, what we want to test and develop on our car, what our pit display may look like and how it may be manufactured, as well as some ideas to generate sponsorship. Now we just need to work on getting all these ideas on paper and into a portfolio so they can earn us some marks….
The first F1 in Schools UK blog came out on Monday. We hope that by sharing our experiences we will give other teams some ideas, but we want to hear from you as well. F1 in Schools is one big family, we are all on this journey together. 2021 will be a hard season because of COVID but as a team we want to keep it as normal and exciting as possible even if the events aren't physical. Our team spirit is high, we are very keen to be part of this great competition. If you are feeling concerned or overwhelmed by the competition, why not connect with other teams on social media, ask for advice, share ideas? We love meeting new teams and being part of this great community spirit!
NEXT TIME: Javier will be filling you all in with an update on the car!
Well that was eventful... What happened? What's Next?
Hi everyone, I’m Maisie from Eclipse and this is our first blog of the new 2021 season! We realise this is going to be a strange season with the whole lockdown and uneasiness in society, but as a team we have decided to get cracking in the best way we can. As engineers we love a problem solving challenge!
Following on from Nationals 2020 we would expect most teams to find it hard to get going again. Although the virtual experience was amazing and enabled us to do what we love, it didn’t have the same impact as being there and socialising with all you guys!
As a team we decided to turn down the offer of going to the World Finals so we could focus on this new season. This was due to our lack of experience in the competition, we just did not feel ready for the World stage. Also we wanted to represent our sponsors well and didn’t want to let them down. Focusing on the 2021 season, with school being closed, the whole team has found it difficult to get motivated. To overcome this we started organising online meetings and making sure we had a plan for Regionals. As a team we have formed support bubbles to check how each other are getting on with their allocated tasks and to support wherever necessary. This process also motivates us to get our jobs done as we do not want to be the one letting the others down.
Recently we started work on our social media strategy, we will see what else this season brings, hopefully we can go into school soon to do some testing and development to the car or we will start to figure out an alternative way...
Hello everyone! It's Javier, Team Principal from Eclipse. After our first Regional finals in January of 2020 we were looking forward to meeting everyone at the National finals until the blasted COVID put an end to that! Having to work virtually towards the National finals was a real challenge, it really stumped us at the start but we found solutions to overcome the various challenges it imposed on us. Using Zoom, Google Software, Discord and other social media enabled us to keep in contact with each other, share work and manage to get everything finished in time for the National Finals.
With me being in Year 11 during lockdown 1, I had my GCSE exams cancelled, funnily enough this really helped out, as Team Principal & Design Engineer I had all the time in the world to organise meetings with the team and design and manufacture our car - producing the car at home, well, was quite hard to say the least... Despite this it definitely helped keep my frame of mind positive during a time of such uncertainty, having something to focus on was such a great positive through what could have been quite a depressing time... Luckily, all the challenges we had to overcome were worth it! We managed to place 3rd at Nationals, winning Best Pit Display and being nominated for Best Design & Engineering Portfolio, this was very unexpected in our first National finals and we were delighted.
This season we have found it difficult to find motivation after Nationals, especially with so much happening in the World. Not being able to meet at school had a big impact on us so we decided to take some time to recuperate and hopefully regain our spark. We have started contacting sponsors to work with once again, thus creating many deadlines we have to meet. This has really helped focus us again as we have to make them, especially when the sponsors have given us their time and effort, we cannot let them down. We have also added a new team member, Tom. We hope that some ‘fresh blood’ will also help freshen up the team and give us some new directions of thought.
UP NEXT: Stay tuned and come back next time to find out if we were able to do any testing or development of the car, if we met the deadlines with our most important sponsors and more...