Andrew Denford is chairman and founder of F1 in Schools, a social enterprise working with industry partners to provide an exciting yet challenging educational experience through Formula One. Spanning age ranges of 9 to 19 years old, their main objective is to help change the perceptions of science, technology, engineering and maths by creating a fun and exciting learning environment for young people to develop an informed view about careers in engineering, Formula One, science, marketing and technology. Challenges take place in 42 countries across the world.
Storm Racing, an all-girl team of 15 and 16 year old students from Sandbach High School & Sixth Form, Sandbach, were delighted to win the Women in Motorsport Award recently, supported by Dare To Be Different, at the F1 in Schools Technology Challenge UK Finals held at Silverstone circuit. Led by Team Manager, Emily Chester, impressed the judges with their strong teamwork, infectious enthusiasm and passion for encouraging girls to be involved with engineering. Founded by former F1 driver Susie Wolff and the MSA (Motor Sports Association), Dare To Be Different is a high-profile new initiative to inspire, connect and celebrate women in motor sport.
F1 in Schools Technology Challenge biggest and best UK Finals
It was certainly the biggest and best UK Finals that we’ve held since its humble beginnings over 15 years ago, with Silverstone circuit and the impressive Wing building being a great home for the competition, an inspirational environment for the competitors to take on the F1 in Schools challenge.
The teams lived up to the location, with outstanding work on display, as well as tremendous effort put in over many months, with the students using so many advanced engineering techniques in the research and development of their cars, as well as the creativity used to deliver strong team identities and marketing programmes, just as in the Formula 1 industry.
The competition challenges students to create their own Formula 1 team which is commissioned to design, construct and race the fastest miniature Formula 1 Car of the Future; a 21cm long scale model built from a modelling block and powered by a compressed air cylinder.
Each team of between three and six students creates a ‘pit’ display and showcases their work in developing their race car. At the national finals each team brings along a pit display, their cars and portfolio, as well as having prepared a verbal presentation for the judges. The cars race on a 20-metre track, with the cars covering the distance in around one second.
The F1 in Schools National Finals take place with the assistance of a host of sponsors and supporters. F1 in Schools thanks: Formula One Management; Autodesk; Institution of Engineering and Technology; Denford Limited; UCL Engineering; Jaguar; WNT; Silverstone Circuit; City University London; University College London; FIA Women in Motorsport; Luke 1977; Dare to Be Different; Engineering UK and Tomorrow’s Engineers.