Roaring with success
Engadine High School students are revving their hand-built engines in anticipation of representing Australia at the world championships of F1 in Schools later this year.
National champions in the Development Class in the F1 in Schools Technology Challenge, the Year 9 students also won national awards for Industry Collaboration, Innovation and Marketing.
F1 in Schools, the Formula One Technology Challenge, is an engineering and design action-learning project for students, implemented in high schools around the world.
Teams of three to five students from grades 5-12 use industry level, three-dimensional CAD/CAM and simulation technologies to design, analyse, test, manufacture and race miniature CO2-powered, balsa wood Formula One cars.
Engadine principal Joanne Jarvis said the Rapid Racing team had spent the past 12 months preparing for the competition.
"I don't think the boys have had recess or lunch since Term 2 last year," Ms Jarvis said.
"I feel as a school we have unleashed talents in these boys ... and they are reaching for the stars.
"Our school motto is 'Dream, Believe, Succeed' and I think it is coming to fruition for these students."
Some of the team had already settled on a career in engineering while others were looking to science, graphic design or marketing.
"Having a career goal is just one of the many virtues of being involved in this wonderful program," Ms Jarvis said.
Team member Evan Pignatelli said the competition had taught him the importance of team work and communication.
"I have especially enjoyed learning about aerodynamics and the science behind designing a fast car using CAD programs. I want to be an engineer but first we want to win the world title in F1 in Schools."
When head teacher Ray Treloar was a boy, he and his friends would design and make billycarts.
"Our biggest design consideration would be what wheels to put on," he said.
"Not only do they [the students] have to consider wheel design, but drag co-efficient and friction free bearings - all to shave off 0.1 seconds over 20 metres, with the goal of sending the car down the track hopefully in under one second."
Ms Jarvis acknowledged the support of sponsors in getting the team to the national finals.
"We are [now] getting the Year 11 business studies students to help us prepare a business plan so we can raise more money and attend the international final later this year, which might be in either Dubai or possibly even London," Ms Jarvis said.
Photo: The Engadine High School F1 team. Photo supplied by Engadine HS.