1.       Team Name

AXLR8

2.       Explain how you chose your team name

AXLR8 (Accelerate) is a clever and innovative way of naming the team. Being a project obviously related to cars and speed, the team decided to name itself accordingly, but also to give the name a more technological and cut-edge feel, as is the spirit of the project.

3.       Country/s represented

Portugal

4.       School/s represented

CLIP - The Oporto International School

5.       Town of School(s)

Porto, Portugal

6.       Number of males /  Number of females on team

There are 2 males on the team and 2 females.

7.       Teams Facebook page

Click Here

8.   Teams Twitter handle

@axlr8.teamf1

9.   Teams website

Click Here

10.   Briefly outline the history of your team

AXLR8 has participated twice in the F1 in Schools challenge, Sofia and João having already competed in the previous season's team but having only reached National Level. With the experience and passion gained from last year, they re-assembled a team, which David and Francisca joined and, together, have worked extremely hard and ceaselessly to meet their goals of being at the World Finals of 2015!

11.   F1 in Schools achievements so far (i.e. Nat champions, other awards etc.)

AXLR8 ranked in 1st place at Regional level and was awarded the prizes for Engineering, Innovation and Identity. They also had the highest ranking Verbal Presentation, although no prize was given for that. At National level, the team ranked in 3rd, and got the awards for Identity, Social Media and Sponsorships and Marketing.

12.   Describe your team in three words 

Dynamic, hard-working, friends.

13.   What do you think makes your World Final team unique from other teams?

Because AXLR8 is a team of driven individuals, forming a dynamic team with excellent team dynamics - that is, the team works well together because of our common passionate attitude towards the project and how eager to learn we are. Most importantly, AXLR8 is a team of friends, which allows fun to be had with such a demanding project.

14.   Magic moment - What has been the most exciting F1 in Schools experience your team has had so far?

Although throughout the project AXLR8 has been through amazing and very fun experiences, perhaps the best and most exciting moment would be the Award Ceremony at the National Finals: AXLR8 was called up on stage and was the team that received the most awards, and then finally given the 3rd place trophy and a place in the World Finals of 2015!

15.   We can laugh now - Tell us about one of your teams funniest moments, maybe it wasn't so funny at the time!

There we're a lot of hilarious moments throughout our journey this year, but the funniest one would definitely be when the team went to test reaction times at CATIM, the technological centre that supports AXLR8. Several different kinds of tests were held, but the one after exercise was the funniest. It involved running around the room followed by 20 jump squats - all team members had to undergo the physical strain, with João running after each one to record a video for the team's use, and the project manager from CATIM capturing the moment with a video on her phone. To simulate competition environment, there were also also loud noises (3 different songs playing at the same time and the team histerically laughing) as well as one of the members flashing camera lights as the trigger was pushed. All of this resulted in a huge, noisy chaos, but was definitely a moment to remember.

16.   What is the biggest challenge in this competition?

The biggest challenge would definitely be time management and securing sponsorships. With all team members involved in a series of extra-curricular activities and projects, sitting exams or signing up for university, it can be very hard to meet all project goals and deadlines. Finding monetary aid is also extremely difficult and was especially nerve-wrecking when it came to securing funds to make it to Singapore.

17.   What are you most looking forward to at the WFs?

AXLR8 is looking forward to everything that will take place over the amazing week! Perhaps what is most important for the team is to carefully look at what the top teams from all over the world are doing and learn from this, sharing experiences and knowledge.

18.   What are your expectations for the WFs?

AXLR8 hopes to make Portugal proud with their participation in the World Finals. They hope to be the highest ranking Portuguese team yet and bring home an award, which is unfortunately, a rare accomplishment for Portuguese teams!

19.   Do you watch/are you interested in F1?  Who’s your favourite driver(s)? 

Although the team member's have always been F1 enthusiasts due to the project they are participating in, the moment that truly awakened an excitement and awe towards real Formula 1, would be the lecture attended at the National Finals, delivered by Mr. Steve Nevey. His experience in F1 is amazing and his passion was easily conveyed, and in seeing that real Formula 1 is just F1 in Schools to a bigger scale was something amazing. From then on, team members have nurtured a special love for Formula 1. Perhaps one of the drivers of today AXLR8 admires the most is Max Verstappen, for being the youngest talent on the racetrack which, in a way, reminds them of themselves: young, promising individuals eager to achieve success. They're also greatly inspired by Susie Wolff, for being one of the very few women to have participated in a Grand Prix. It is amazing to see a woman succeed in what has always been labelled as a "man's sport", and is a special inspiration particularly for female team members.