TWO BECOMES ONE ACROSS CONTINENTS FOR F1 IN SCHOOLS WORLD FINALS
A unique feature of the F1 in Schools™ World Finals event is the inclusion of collaboration teams. Runners-up from each of the competing nations F1 in Schools National Final are invited to link with another runner-up to form a collaboration and work together, often across continents, and then coming together for the World Finals event.
The experience of working with students from different countries with barriers of time zones, language, curriculum and, in many cases, culture, adds another dimension to the challenge presented by the F1 in Schools programme.
The F1 in Schools World Finals 2012 will feature seven collaboration teams. Communicating by virtual technologies such as CISCO Webex and Skype as well as social network sites and email, the teams must work together as one team, sharing the roles and work load to produce a scale-model F1 car, present it to the judges and race against the other teams at this prestigious event.
This year’s collaborations include Canada and South Korea forming CanroK, Canada and USA forming Velox F1, Australia and Germany creating Rapid Motion, Singapore and Ireland joining as Aptus Racing, Germany and UAE naming themselves Synergy and England and USA competing as Venator F1.
Rapid Motion, the team from Australia and Germany combines two of the strong competing nations in F1 in Schools. Although it will be the first time that all members of the team will meet when they arrive in Abu Dhabi, one of the German team members, Sebastian Witt, has already had a headstart after visiting Australia for a holiday and meeting up with his team mates while there.
CanroK, the collaboration between Canada and Korea joined forces in January of this year. The language barrier has been the biggest challenge for this team, with interpreters needed to help the team members work effectively. The cultural differences and a fourteen hour time difference have added to the pressure on these young students, but they have all risen to the challenge and are looking forward to competing in Abu Dhabi.
F1 in Schools challenges students to design, develop, manufacture and race a scale-model Formula 1™ car of the future, with the initiative taking place in 40 countries. Each of these hold National Finals and winners go on to compete at the World Finals, along with the collaboration teams. For the National Winners the pursuit of the World Champions crown takes many hours of working together as a team in school, after school and during holidays to perfect their presentation, further develop their car and test it in readiness for the World Finals. For the collaboration teams this process is much more complicated and it is testament to the resourcefulness and commitment of students from different timezones, cultures and education systems that they overcome additional challenges to create their unique Formula 1 cars of the future.
Founder and Chairman of F1 in Schools, Andrew Denford says of teams linking together for the World Finals, “The collaboration teams are very special to our World Finals and embody the spirit of the challenge, not only overcoming the physical barriers of time differences and distance between the two countries, but also the different styles of education. The teamwork needed to be successful as a collaboration team is immense and it is a testament to the personalities involved in the team that they all work so harmoniously and put together such strong entries. I wouldn’t be surprised if a collaboration team were World Champions and that would be the ultimate reward for the efforts that these students put into competing.”
The F1 in Schools World Finals 2012 take place at Ferrari World Abu Dhabi from 29th – 31st October this year, coinciding with the 2012 FORMULA 1 ETIHAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX.