Worcester Students Speed in to National Final of F1 Design Competition

A talented team of school students were pipped to the post after racing through to the national final of a major motorsport design competition.

Five bright sparks, all Year 10 pupils at The King’s School Worcester, entered the F1 in Schools Professional Class competition under the banner of Prism Racing.

Proudly sponsored by Worcester-based The Key Safe Company, the team’s F1 scale car burned past its rivals at the regional heat to qualify in pole for the national final at Magna Science Adventure Centre in Rotherham last week.

The creative quintet ran out of gas in their high-octane bid to take the chequered flag, but still gained so much from their journey through the tournament. Team member Aron Gijsel labelled the experience ‘truly invaluable’.

“The competition provided a fantastic learning opportunity, and we gained a wealth of knowledge that will undoubtedly help us in the near future,” the 14-year-old said. “The entire journey from the regional champions to the national stage was an unforgettable experience for our team.

“As we reflect on our time at the nationals, we are filled with motivation and determination to come back stronger next year. We are committed to applying the lessons learned and honing our skills to hopefully make it to the podium in next season’s competition.”

Leaf1, from The Langton Grammar School for Boys in Canterbury, raced home in first to receive a full scholarship to study Mechanical Engineering at Aston University. Leaf1 will also get to compete at the Aramco F1 in Schools World Finals.

Unity Racing and Vertex Racing, which finished second and third respectively, Hypernova (Welsh champions) and Ventura Racing (Scottish champions) will also compete at the world finals, traditionally held alongside an international F1 Grand Prix.

As part of the UK tournament, sponsored by Lenovo, teams weren’t just scored on the speed of their cars in drag races. Their project management, branding and marketing campaigns also came into the equation in presentations to industry professionals and, in some cases, F1 team members.

Aron led that area of expertise for Prism Racing, even producing a website and newsletters as well as securing sponsorship for the team.

“Our marketing strategy was to focus on businesses in the area that mirrored our ethos and values of the STEM industry,” Aron explained.

“The Key Safe Company was one of the companies I emailed and they returned with a really positive response. From that, we arranged a team meeting and secured sponsorship for the regional round.

“Then, for the national round, we invited them to our school where we pitched our car, our ideas and how we could be better for the national finals.”

Kelly Woodhouse, customer service manager at The Key Safe Company, was left ‘seriously impressed’ by Prism Racing’s budding young entrepreneurs and mechanics.

“As well as sponsoring the team, The Key Safe Company’s Engineering Team volunteered time to mentor the students, who have selected Engineering as their chosen career path and wanted to discuss ideas with experts in this field,” Kelly said.

“As a UK-based enterprise that designs and engineers market-leading products, we’re incredibly proud to have supported this STEM initiative, which is all geared towards inspiring the future generation of British engineers.”

Founded in 1996, Key Safe designs, produces and markets security products including police preferred key safes, secure cabinets, access control systems, key cabinets and padlocks, setting the bar for quality and security.

You can check out Prism Racing’s self-developed website at https://prismracing.u