Bridlington Schools Green Power Car Project
Since October 2016 Bridlington Schools talented youths have been working on the Green Power Project. We took part in the 11-16's IET formula that is ideal for primary schools and secondary schools. The event consisted of two, ninety minutes races. However, the race was not about who was in what position, but how many laps your car could do in the time allotted. Our team contained six drivers, four pit crew members and one press officer.
Throughout the day of the race, we had many tasks to complete and as you could imagine, it was very stressful. The day started with a team briefing and a practice race. We chose to start the race with the tallest driver as it was easier to tighten the straps than to loosen them. Our technique sped up the changing process and made the day pleasant. "This was an amazing experience for me. I joined the Green Power Car Project and have helped build it during extra-curricular sessions. I got the chance to be a driver in the race and I loved every second of it. I am hoping our school will enter the competition next year, so I can take part again."-Emma Smales, 13.
We all enjoyed the chance to build and drive our own car and we were hoping to win. There was a huge amount of card and racers aiming for the same thing as us, and they were a mix of more developed and less so. It mostly depended on the drivers.
Mr Darrington, our science teacher, was eager for our school to participate in the race, and him and Mr Goodman did their bit to help out with the more skill-requiring technicalities when building the car. Despite all the work and effort we had put into the car, nerves still ran through the bodies of our crew when race day arrived. Mr D expressed his concern after out scrutineering test. “It’s the motor I’m most worried about.” Overworking and thus overheating the motor would result in us almost certainly losing the race due to the rule that we could not change batteries or the motor during the race, so Sally checked the temperature of both whenever we pitted. The level of battery we couldn’t really test, but Freddie fixed his phone to the steering wheel to use as a speedometer, and we checked the reader we had whenever the car began to slow down, so we knew when to pit.
Our crew contains many tight friendships that allowed us to work as a team to improve our result. Mr Grice, who drove us to Hull and back, generously giving up his Sunday, seemed to enjoy himself, and spent a lot of the time in a chair enjoying the sun. Perhaps not a total loss? The teachers all seemed to have a good time at both events, and got involved with it as much as they could.
Because there was only 6 drivers allowed, not everyone who wanted to could drive, but each person put in effort to help, whether it was in the pits or taking photographs. Tegan, our press officer, captured some moments of the race (and also not of the race!) to put with this report. From action shots of the race, to nice team and group photos showing off our embroidered, personalised t-shirts (courtesy of Tegan and her mum), the highlights of the project were captured.
Our race was mostly clean, with no crashes involving us, until the last 10-15 minutes of the final race. Evan, our smallest but one of the feistiest drivers, was caught up between two cars when the car ahead of him crashed. Evan crashed into that car, before the car behind proceeded to finish it off, by crashing into Evan. Thankfully, Evan came out unscathed, but the car wasn’t so fortunate. The axel from one of the wheels had been bent, and it was irreparable with the tools we had brought, thus bringing our race to an early end. Of course, the crash wasn’t Evan’s fault, it was unavoidable, and it didn’t cause too much disappointment considering there was hardly any time left of the race anyway. Unfortunately, our final position is unconfirmed, but we know we were neither at the top, nor last, roughly 25th.
I think we all agree that the project was an amazing experience, and most of us would like another opportunity to build another car, or improve our current one, to race again next year. Our team had an amazing time, and we would like to thank Mr Grice for being our chauffeur, Mrs Nicholson for coming with us and offering her help and support throughout the project, Mr Goodman for all the help and effort he put into the car, and finally Mr Darrington for hosting the meetings, being so enthusiastic and making the project a truly enjoyable one. We will miss Mr Darrington next year as he is moving schools, so he will be unable to do the Greenpower car next year, but we still hope someone will step into his place and allow us to continue next year. Our crew was amazing, and we all had an absolutely incredible, unforgettable experience building and racing this car.
The members of the project are as follows (in no particular order):
By Isobel Waldie and Tegan Broomhead