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Schools gear up for 2012 Bedford Autodrome Schools Grand Prix

Monday, June 11 2012

There are now just a few days remaining until the third running of the Bedford Autodrome Schools' Grand Prix on Sunday (17 June).

Eight schools from the Bedford area have confirmed their entries, including inaugural champions Mark Rutherford Upper School, and last year's victors Biddenham Upper School. Both schools return with a two car challenge.

This year's competitors are:

  1. Bedford Academy
  2. St. Thomas More Upper School (2 cars)
  3. Mark Rutherford Upper School (2 cars)
  4. Biddenham Upper School (2 cars)
  5. Redbourne Upper School
  6. Bedford High School (2 cars)
  7. Bedford Girls School
  8. Bedford Modern School

Launched in late 2009 by MSV Chief Executive Jonathan Palmer and the late Mayor of Bedford, Frank Branston, the occasion challenges pupils aged 11-16 from schools within the Bedford Borough area to design and construct a small electric car, before competing in a two hour endurance race.

In addition to creating the car itself, each school is also challenged to involve as many pupils and departments as possible by creating a website for their project, putting together a pit crew to assist with driver and battery changes, publicising their team and providing hospitality for their guests on raceday. Awards for these categories, which are designed to cover as much of the school curriculum as possible, will be presented on the day.

The Mayor of Bedford Borough, Dave Hodgson, said: "This is the third year that the Council has worked with MSV to run this event, and each year, the display of engineering talent on show has been hugely impressive. Also impressive is the sheer determination shown by students in seeing through all aspects of the project, resulting in this highly physical and demanding competition. The children and young people who have worked so hard in preparation for Sunday's race should be enormously proud of their efforts, and I hope they all have a great day."

Jonathan Palmer, MotorSport Vision Chief Executive, said: "The Bedford Autodrome Schools' Grand Prix has provided a wonderful opportunity for pupils to get involved with not just practical engineering, but with the creation of an exciting performance vehicle, totally in tune with the low emission objectives of transport today.  I am delighted that a number of schools have recognised this great opportunity for their pupils and that their teachers have been so motivated and inspiring.  The results of a huge amount of work will be revealed in competition on race day and I look forward to seeing many very excited pupils give it their all!  It is also wonderful to see Bedford Borough Council support this valuable educational programme so strongly.

For more information on the Bedford Autodrome Schools' Grand Prix, click here.