TWO TEAMS of Year 6 pupils from Murch Junior School recently achieved success in a Formula 1 in schools competition.

Pupils entered the Jaguar sponsored Formula 1 in Schools Primary Challenge with team ‘Speed 360’, winning the competition for Best Manufactured Car, and team ‘Lightning Bolt’, also showing exemplary performance in marketing and ‘Pit stop’ display.

The competition, organised by EESW (Engineering Education Scheme Wales), was held in the Big Bang Fair at the Celtic Manor last week.

The challenge allows students to be creative and innovative, working as part of a team, using skills in ICT, maths, design, marketing and financial literacy, working to deadlines. They secured sponsorship from businesses in the local community to enable them to ensure team identity, and cover costs for the making of their car along with travelling to the venue.

Sponsors included - A Class Apart , Valley View Fruit Stores, Joe’s Chippy, Murch Post Office, Mark Griffiths Family Butchers, Bank of Flowers, Andrew Wilson Motors, Technology Stars, RTB Homes, Valley Developments South Wales Ltd and Trailermech Ltd.

To design and manufacture their carbon dioxide powered Formula 1 racing cars pupils learned how to use Computer aided design, CAD software, emulating the design and engineering processes employed by real engineering companies. The cars were then raced on a 20 metre track at Celtic Manor where they reach speeds of up to 60 miles per hour.

Maggie Oakman, from Murch Junior School, said: “We are really grateful to STEM Cymru who organise these challenges which aim to inspire and motivate people to choose careers in science, technology, engineering and maths. Our pupils were certainly inspired, they worked so hard and participated in an experience from which they have learned so much so quickly.”

She added: “Staff at school are extremely proud of our Murch pupils whose dedication and determination has ensured success in this competition.”

The children were presented with £100, given medals each, and a slate trophy at the prize giving ceremony, hosted by BBC Wales presenter Rebecca John.

Jonathan Evans, resource manager for team ‘Speed 360’, added: “It was an exciting challenge, thoroughly worthwhile, culminating in a brilliant day at Celtic Manor, and we won.”