F1 – Dave Tiddy, Head of 6th Form, Ysgol Pen Y Bryn

This has been a fabulous experience for our school, and has been unlike any other project that we have previously been involved with.  Motivation for this project was marvellous, as you never need to justify why you are building a “Race Car”.  For our project we had to design, make and race our own unique gas powered race car at the Welsh Heat of the Bloodhound Challenge as part of Formula One in schools.  Our main aim was to take part in this competition and by doing so, be the first Special School in Wales to enter the competition and take part.  We do not have the extensive facilities that you would find in a standard Secondary school, but with the help of   The experts at the Waterton centre in Bridgend and Amman Valley School we were able to undertake activities we previously would have said were beyond us.  It was also a surprise to find out that Formula One in schools supplied most of the materials needed for this project.

From our perspective, the project went really well and exceeded all of our expectations.  The children and staff loved this project, but more importantly, were able to compete against mainstream schools on equal terms.  We achieved our aim of being the first Special school to enter the Welsh Heat.  Our car looked good and it was quite fast. We were 7th out of 14 and we thought that we could not have done any better.  We did not go through to the national finals in Birmingham but we did get a trophy. We have learnt that smaller cars do well and we have learnt a lot about aerodynamics.  Next year we will be back with a much smaller and lighter car. We want to thank all of those people who helped us with this project, and in the words of our school motto, “Believe it, Achieve it” we think sums up our success.

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