Welcome back!! It’s Maisie and Evie here from Eclipse. After a slight reshuffle in our roles following Regionals, we have decided to take charge of the blog on behalf of the team. Stay tuned for more updates from ourselves but keep an eye out for some special blogs/vlogs every now and again from other team members such as Javier, Tom and Isaac.
To start off, we would like to say a massive well done to all teams that competed in the 2021 virtual Regional finals; everyone did amazingly, especially in the circumstances provided to us all. We hope that, in some way or another, our blog may have inspired you along the way. We will continue to try our best to do this in the future.
Our goals in the run up to Nationals are to try and inspire a younger generation of budding STEM enthusiasts, improve on all of our project elements, set-up the teams website, promote F1 in Schools, continue to run our return on investment scheme with sponsors, tweak the car design alongside working with our Platinum Sponsor, BAE SYSTEMS, and remember to have a bit of fun!
Having a draft of all our portfolios ready for when we get back to school will save us a lot of time in the long run and although this does seem like a daunting task for the holidays, the short deadline doesn’t provide us with another option. This means that when we return to school we can make adjustments and have them out of the way relatively quickly. On top of this, Javier and Tom are going to have the final car design ready to be manufactured as soon as we get back to leave time for manufacturing inconsistencies.
When we return to school we want to come back with a bang and make the most of our time, manufacturing the cars, getting the website up and running, finalising all of our portfolios and working on producing the verbal and pit display presentations. Getting all of this done in time will definitely be a challenge but we are up for it!
As a team, we can all agree that communication in the journey to Regionals was hard; placed in year group bubbles and only able to communicate through Zoom calls and messages. Despite this, there is hope in sight as COVID rules become less restrictive and Evie and Maisie move into Year 12. As well as talking with each other, we’d love to form stronger relationships with other teams in the community. If you would be interested in having a chat to get to know each other as a team, please just connect with us on social media at @eclipseqe.
Thank you very much for reading, we hope you are excited to follow the next step of our journey. We wish you all the best of luck!!
Hello, it's Javier, back with a final update before our Regional finals! The good news is that we managed to successfully submit everything on time for the deadline and are looking forward to competing later next month. I am very excited to see what everyone has produced and how all of our cars perform in the races!
The ARAMCO F1 in Schools 2020(21) World Finals took place last week and a massive congratulations goes to Britannia Red from Robert Mays School for becoming 2020 World Champions; it is great that the trophy is in the UK for another year! Well done guys! The event was inspiring, we hope that one day we may be good enough to get to a world finals. The F1 in Schools team did a great job putting on an enjoyable experience for all involved, competitors and spectators.
Lastly, we would like to thank all of our readers and Mark Wemyss-Holden for offering us the opportunity to write the blog in order to help out the F1 in Schools community. Thank you very much for reading, we hope you have enjoyed seeing our progress and the odd piece of advice we have given. We hope to give you an update after the Regional Finals to see what's next for the team.
UP NEXT: What's next for Eclipse after the Regional Finals?...
Hi everyone, Maisie again. We are getting close! The final run up to the submission deadline is here. Now Evie and my exams are over, we are working non-stop on getting everything completed and adding the final touches. Looking at what needs to be done and making sure it is done to the best standards.
Now that the verbal presentation is complete, that's been something checked off our long, lengthy checklist which gives us some hope in completing everything in time. It seems daunting but everything will be done in the end if you put in the right amount of time and effort (to do your best).
Evie has been working tirelessly on the Enterprise portfolio and it is well underway to near completion. The final touches need to be done, for example those tiny figure number details. For myself, I have been completing the graphics for the pit display and getting it ready for the pit video ready for the final submission. As a team we need to do that soon and a script needs to be made.
Tom and Javier have completed the car! The CAD model has been prepared for the graphics and the whole team has finally been able to actually see the final product, especially after working on it for so long! This was sent off, as you may have seen on our social media (Instagram: @eclipse.gb / Twitter: @eclipseqe), in a nicely packaged box they made.
Regionals are running close but it is exciting to finally compete again, the 2020 Nationals seems like so long ago now. It’s just all the annoying details that need to be made.
UP NEXT: Javier’s will be back after we have submitted everything to let you know how it's gone and most importantly, what's next for Eclipse?
Hi everyone! It’s Javier back with an update on the car and other bits and bobs. It’s getting close to the submission deadline for the regional finals so we are very busy but also very excited. It seems so long since Eclipse competed at an event!
We recently finished manufacturing our car which now just needs a lot of tricky ‘decal application,’ we are now regretting the new graphics design for the car! Getting to this point has not been easy, there have been many things going wrong. Our biggest problem came after assembling the parts, the car was overweight! So, we decided to put it on an intensive diet. We managed to print some of our components in a different material quick enough to get them on in time, phew!
Some good news is that we have finally finished our Verbal Presentation! Working with a presentation coach, Marcus Orlovsky, we hope that we have improved enough to improve our marks in this section. Obviously it was still very difficult to produce as the team are in different bubbles and cannot be together to film. I am sure you have all found interesting ways to produce yours and look forward to hopefully seeing them.
Now the sad news, the F1 in Schools World Finals Trophy had to go back to Denford this week so that the 2020(21) World Champions can be given the great prize. It was truly an honour to have it at school after our predecessor at Queen Elizabeth’s, Evolve UK, won the competition in 2019. It was a remarkable achievement and seeing it every day was a reminder of what is possible. We hope to bring it back to our school one day...
Now we need to focus on finalising our portfolios as well as the Pit presentation which are all underway. Tom and I have Year 12 AS-Level Mock Exams soon, but Maisie and Evie have finally finished their Year 11 exams so we will pass the baton to them to pick up the extra work.
UP NEXT: Find out how we are doing in the final run up to the submission deadline with Maisie...
Hello everyone, Maisie here, I hope you have had a good week at school and enjoyed the vlogs both Javier and I have posted recently. It is getting closer to the submission deadline - finally! This can be a stressful time and I am sure we are all feeling anxious about. We thought it may help if we wrote our plan for the rest of the time and see if it may give you some ideas of where you are in relation to it.
The first thing we are getting out of the way is the verbal presentation, it is being recorded and edited this weekend.. Getting this completed now means we have more time to focus on portfolios and the pit display work, not forgetting the car build!
Working alongside our sponsors Guardian Displays on the pit has made this season's display better than ever and hopefully it should be completed soon. We just need to double check our graphics for typos and alignment of images. This may seem minor but is worth doing, it is a poor representation of the team if people spot errors on this.
Our portfolios are getting there and are going to be finalised next week along with our car, again, it is important to leave plenty of time to check spelling and layout, this improves the judges overall first impression of your work.
If you have any questions feel free to email or contact us via social media (@eclipseqe), we don’t pretend to have all the answers and enjoy learning from you guys too!
UP NEXT: Javier has a story to tell about putting our car on a diet as well as an update on the final car build and portfolios.
Hello, it's Javier! I'm back this week to update you all on the car in the form of another video with Tom, our Manufacturing Engineer. I hope you enjoy watching!
UP NEXT: Maisie will be back with an update on our Pit Display...
Hello, it's Maisie! It's been a while since we've given a face-to-face update so here it is. I've brought Evie and Isaac along with me for the vlog so you guys can finally meet everyone on the team. I hope you enjoy!
UP NEXT: Javier will be back to give an update on our progress and whether or not himself and Tom have finished making the cars...
Hello everyone! It’s Javier, I hope you’re all excited for the run up to Regional finals. This week I am here to give an update on our car development; and other events we have taken part in.
This week we have finally managed to finish our car development for this season's Regional finals. Now it's time to produce the final manufacture of our cars ahead of the project submission deadline. This ‘rushed’ development, due to COVID isolation periods, has led to 10 broken front wings, 5 broken rear wings, tether line guide breakages as well as numerous fingers being super glued together. Staying positive has been tough, but hopefully we have now got a final car design that will survive race day, fingers crossed!
Over the past few months we have been organising a lecture to be delivered by the Early Careers Event team of our Platinum Sponsor, BAE Systems, to our Year 11 students. This was held in our schools new lecture theatre and was a massive success, we were very happy to have promoted STEM within our school as we know how much BAE Systems’ opportunities can help students like ourselves. We think that this competition offers such great opportunities to inspire others, and any chance we get to promote STEM to others we take.
We recently collaborated with up and coming Indian team, Aquila, to record their first ever podcast. We thoroughly enjoyed sharing our experience in the competition so far and we wish them the best of luck, you can listen to the episode here. Collaborating with teams from around the world is one of most fun things to do within the competition as you learn about different cultures and meet some amazing people, it is also a great way to get some ideas for your own team as well as see potential future competition!
Don't forget to check your submission deadlines for the Regional finals, they are closely approaching. Try not to leave everything until the last minute, everything always takes longer than you plan it to, there will be things that go wrong, try to finish earlier than the deadline. We do try this and one day may even achieve it ourselves! Keep going and make sure to contact us if you would like any advice, we will help as best as we can.
UP NEXT: Next time Maisie will update you on our pit display and verbal presentation progress, and any updates on the car...
Hi everyone, Maisie here! I hope everyone is well under way preparing for this season's Regional Finals - the deadline is coming around so quick and now seems so, so close!
I thought I would give an update on our Verbal Presentation and Pit Display progress, something I have been trying to push forward ready for the submission deadline. After a lot of rehearsals, and performing in front of a number of people to get feedback our verbal presentation aims to be filmed and finished by the end of this month, fingers crossed!
With the confirmation that the Regional finals will definitely be virtual, we have been continuing to work with one of our Gold sponsors, Guardian Displays, to produce a design. We are designing something that can eventually be made if we are successful enough to get to the National finals, but still able to show as a concept design for Regionals via CAD drawings and an animated walk through.
Tom and Javier are starting to put the car together after more testing, things still keep breaking, their luck continues! Last week a video was posted on F1inSchoolsUK social media about the judging and scrutineering for the competition - feel free to have a look yourselves or contact us via social media for our advice, we love hearing from other teams.
This month is a lot of preparation for the Regional finals deadline, so good luck to all teams, this time can be stressful but in the end it’s worth it!
UP NEXT: Check out next week's blog for an update from Javier on how our car development is going and some of the recent collaborations we've taken part in!
Hello! It’s Javier. I'm back to give an update on the car and how we have been working together over the easter holidays. We’ve thoroughly enjoyed having a bit of a break but things never stop in the world of F1 in Schools!
This week we have again been working on the verbal presentation in hope to get it finalised by the end of the month. We’ve been rehearsing regularly and have another online meeting with our industry expert to help us develop our confidence in public speaking.
We have made some progress with our Pit Display, working with Guardian Displays to produce a virtual concept that has the potential to be physical if needs be, if any events are face to face this year, fingers crossed! Working with industry experts in aspects of the competition is a great way of ensuring that your ideas are actually possible, this past couple of weeks have really showed us how important their advice is.
Tom and myself are hoping to have our wheels manufactured by our Platinum Sponsor, BAE Systems, by the end of the month in order to get our cars ready for the Regional Finals. Our number one priority is making the car complaint to ensure we don’t lose out on any points during competition day as well as making the car as close to the minimum weight as possible (50g in the professional class). Newton's Second Law tells us that Force = Mass x Acceleration and the only variable we can directly change here is the mass of the car as the force from the power pack is fixed. So, making sure it is as lightweight as possible means that the acceleration can be as high as possible meaning the car reaches its maximum velocity as fast as possible.
F1 in Schools UK have a video to get to grips with the specification and scrutineering judging of the car if you are not familiar with this and is linked below in case you might find it helpful.
UP NEXT: Find out more on Eclipse’s run up to the virtual regional finals submission deadline...
Hello everyone, Maisie here again! It's great to get back into things now that my exams are over. I'm looking forward to working on my section of the competition once more.
This week we are on our Easter break but that doesn't mean we are stopping! Issac and myself had a meeting with our industry professional, Marcus Orlovsky, to work on our individual presentation skills which was then followed by a team meeting to collate everything we have learnt from these sessions. The rest of the team were also given areas to work on in regards to their presentation skills in separate meetings so bringing everything we had learned together was very helpful.
I have realised that I need to be a bit more energetic and “waffle” less when it comes to presenting as this can take up quite a bit of presentation time. We also presented to our headteacher in order to gain an outside opinion of our presentation. We feel that it's important to present to as many different people as possible to get different perspectives and pointers for us to work on. Hopefully you can do the same!
Javier and Tom have also been busy testing the car and have sent our final wheel designs off to BAE Systems as they are manufacturing them for us. The next thing to do will be to get a start on our portfolios as we have been so busy focussing on other aspects. When we made our first portfolios and presentations it took us forever, however as time has gone on we can build on previous documents which takes less time than starting from scratch - there's a good tip for anyone going into their second season!
Hopefully everyone's enjoying a nice rest from school over the Easter period and are coping well with being back at school!
UP NEXT: Will Javier and Tom manage to get the cars finished and ready for the Regional finals?
Hi everyone! It's Javier. I thought I would update you on the physical testing myself and Tom have been doing since being back at school. To be honest it hasn't all gone to plan, but as James Dyson says ‘Enjoy failure and learn from it. You can never learn from success’ I must admit this has been hard to follow! However over the last two weeks we’ve learned a variety of things that will be useful, some of which we would like to share with you.
In the lockdown we built, what we thought was, a perfectly clear and structured plan for the return to school on how to test our car from developments made in virtual analysis. On returning to school soon we realised that in reality things take longer than you think they will. Deadlines we set ourselves were obviously too optimistic and were missed, things break, rooms aren’t available, people get ill, etc. When we do this again we will of course create a logically structured plan but minimise chance for errors to occur and even have ideas of a contingency plan that could be used if a big error occurs!
Disappointingly we had quite a few issues with track testing. We recently stayed after school to set up our homemade 20m track. During this session we had a few ‘explosions’ with parts flying off in all directions. We have now learned about the importance of ‘just because it looks good and works in CAD doesn’t mean it works in the real world.’ Firstly because some parts may very easily break (as was common with us) and secondly as the tolerance of 3D printing means the physical model may be bigger or smaller than expected.
Despite this we, of course, did not give up! We love a challenge. We soon returned to test on our smaller 10m track which meant we could test more components in a shorter amount of time. As well as this we learned from our mistakes and re-designed some CAD to later re-print them to test. However, this wasn’t enough… As you can see from the image below it was pretty frustrating. The car snapped! This was very unexpected as we would expect compression not shear of the car due to it hitting the front of the body directly head on.
Although these are some major setbacks we had figured out how we will realistically be able to develop our Regionals car and gained a vast amount of knowledge. What’s the point in testing if you don’t learn anything? Following what real F1 teams do, we are working ahead on the Eclipse car and are treating this as one big development for the future.
UP NEXT: Tune in with Maisie to find out more information on how we plan to finish our verbal presentation, portfolios and pit display before the regional final submission deadline.
Hello, Maisie here, a quick blog from me this week as Evie and I are still undergoing exams at the moment as we are in Year 11, I am sure we are not alone trying to balance F1 in Schools and being in an examination year, its very stressful isn’t it?!?
In the past week a couple of the team met with Marcus Orlovsky face to face for the first time and gave him a tour of our technology department and to showcase what we have done so far. This meet has allowed him to understand more about the competition and he has continued to help us develop our presenting skills, I am looking forward to finally meeting him face to face for some verbal presentation practice in the Easter break.
For British Science Week Javier and Tom presented to Year 8 students to get them involved in STEM and explain the great competition that is F1 in Schools. This is also part of our sponsorship deals, to promote STEM to the community!
Due to covid restrictions we still can't get together as a team as we are in different bubbles. We are having to communicate via lots of texts, video chats, and we are filming what each other are doing so we are all in the loop.
We are finally completing some physical testing this week, Javier will let you know how that goes in his next blog. Stay safe everyone, not long until we can all meet (fingers crossed).
UP NEXT: Javier is back to update you on some of the physical testing himself and Tom have been doing!
Hello! It's Javier here. Were back with another video for the blog as we received lots of positive feedback from the last. If you want to get in contact please don't hesitate to reach out through our social media platforms or by email, enjoy!
UP NEXT: Maisie is back to take over for an awaited update on outreach and sponsorship! Has she managed to get anywhere with new and existing sponsors through lockdown?
Hello, my name’s Tom and I'll be writing this week's blog. With Evie and Maisie busy revising, Javier, Isaac and myself are supporting them by taking on their roles for the next few weeks.
I joined the team in the middle of January in order to take some of the weight off the rest of the team's shoulders. I have really enjoyed the last 2 months and the team has made me feel very welcome. However, It's hard work. Coming into a team of 4 that have been working together for the past year means you have to be able to bring something a little different to the table.
As the new manufacturing engineer I have been thrown into the deep end with developing what was our 2020 Nationals Car. I believe that this is the best way to do things when you're joining a team. If you work hard and listen to any advice from the rest of the team then you should be able to prove your a valuable member and they made a good decision to bring you on.
Due to the pandemic, I have only been talking with the team over Zoom so I’m really looking forward to meeting the team face to face. It’s been difficult to really get to know them on video calls so being in the workshop should be a good opportunity to get to know them more. My specialism is in design and aeronautics as these are the areas I hope to study in the future. I hope to bring presentation and design skills to the team as I have a background in public speaking and design. I hope to help the team on their journey to succeed and improve some of the weaker areas from last year's season.
I look forward to the rest of the season developing the car for the regional finals in July and hopefully making it to the National finals later on in the year. Can the new kid make a difference to this already successful team? I really hope so!
UP NEXT: Javier’s back for another update before Maisie takes over once again...
Hello! It's Javier, this week we are all preparing to return to our schools, face to face meets as a team, back into workshops and hopefully moving forward with the F1 in Schools challenge!
This should be filling us with excitement, we have been waiting for so long for it to happen, however, 2 of our team, Maisie and Evie are in Year 11 and the school have just told them they have exams in 2 weeks that will count towards their final GCSE grades. As a team we have had to assess how we can support each other to allow them to focus on their GCSEs without affecting our F1 in Schools journey. This is where having a great team spirit helps and hopefully we can share the workload, we are glad we are all involved in all aspects so we can take on each other's jobs when called upon.
It is not all bad news, the return to school means Tom and I can get back to physically testing the car, comparing to Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). We are excited to see how virtual and physical testing compare in the test results.
We use Autodesk CFD Ultimate (2021) which provides fast and accurate fluid flow as well as having the capacity to show some of your results in a really satisfying way for portfolios and presentations (like the image below!). This software is FREE for any F1 in Schools team, there are plenty of tutorials on YouTube of how to use this program. To download CFD Ultimate from the Autodesk website, click here.
Eclipse's 2020 Nationals Car in CFD
UP NEXT: Next week you will hear from our newest team member, Tom, as he steps in for Maisie.
Hi everyone, i'ts Maisie! This week we wanted to try something different, so we made a video for the blog as you can see below.... If you have any questions don't hesitate to get in contact through our social media platform or email. We hope you enjoy.
UP NEXT: Javier will be giving an update about the car development and how returning to school will impact us as a team...
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...