Rookie teams sweep F1 in Schools National Titles
200 students Compete to represent the UAE at the F1 in Schools WORLD FINALS
Abu Dhabi, UAE, 7th May 2012: Over 200 students, parents, education officials and VIPs descended on Yas Marina Circuit yesterday to compete in, and watch all the action of the 4th annual F1 in Schools UAE National Championship. Competition was fierce as over 34 Senior and Intermediate teams went head to head in a bid to secure the title of UAE Champions and along with it, a coveted invitation to the F1 in Schools World Finals.
Team Safire Racing, a 5-member team from the German International School in Dubai was named the UAE Senior Champions 2012 at the end of the day-long event which saw them secure the win through a series of competitions that included team presentations, a team pit stop display, and head to head racing. In addition to the overall champion title, the team, a first year entry into the competition, also won awards for Best Senior Rookie Team, Best Overall Reaction Time and Best Senior Engineered Car.
16-year-old Chris Land, Head of IT and Communications for Safire Racing said that the team was thrilled to be able to represent the UAE later this year at the F1 in Schools World Finals. “We feel amazing - it just proves that hard work does pay off.”
Forming in early 2011, Safire Racing has had an exciting journey to the podium, a journey that has included securing a major sponsorship with Mercedes Benz Middle East and a meet and greet with Shanghai Grand Prix 2012 winner Nico Rosberg. In addition to learning about, and making valuable connections in the automobile and motorsport worlds, the team said that they had also learned a host of other valuable business skills.
“There are so many aspects of F1, from the technical, to design, to communications that we learned about. We also had a lot of fun in the process,” added Land.
Placing first in the UAE Intermediate Champions 2012 category was Slipstream from Dubai College in Dubai. The 6 member team, also a first year entry into the F1 in Schools National Championship, said that they were relieved with the win, and surprised at how much they had learned through the F1 in Schools programme.
“We were really surprised that it wasn’t all about the car and how many other things we learned,” said 14-year-old Slipstream Team Manager, Tom Webster.
Richard Cregan, Chief Executive Officer of Yas Marina Circuit said that the competition was testament to the UAE’s high calibre of schools and students as well as its growing base of motorsport fans: “The professionalism of the teams and calibre of team presentations has been extraordinary. As the home of F1 in Schools in the UAE, it is inspiring to see the passion and hard work of the UAE’s next generation of home-grown designers, engineers and motorsport managers.”
Amina Taher, Head of Community Engagement at Mubadala, a major sponsor of the F1 in Schools programme congratulated the competitors and said that programme played an important role in equipping the UAE’s future leaders with valuable business skills: “All the teams who participated in the F1 in Schools programme are champions. Judging from the depth and breadth of young design, engineering and business talent on display at the championships, it’s clear the programme is offering students an opportunity to develop a variety of skills.”
In addition to students, parents and educational officials, the former captain of the UAE national football team Mohammad Omar, also made a special visit to the championships to lend his support to team Legacy of Repton School in Dubai. Through their sponsorship efforts, the team had outreached to Omar who agreed to be involved.
Since 2010, over 1300 UAE students have participated in the F1 in Schools programme in the UAE. The programme, which aims to introduce engineering into the classroom through the excitement of F1 racing sees student teams develop and build all aspects of an F1 team. In addition to designing, building and racing small scale F1 cars, the teams are also tasked with designing a team identity, collateral and uniforms as well as securing sponsorships and marketing their teams.
Members of the winning UAE Senior Champions 2012 team, Safire Racing of the German International School Dubai include Team Manager Laurenz Bissada, 14 of Germany, Technical Designer Till Blaha, 14 of Germany, Resources Manager Cara Bissada, 16 of Germany, Head of IT and Communications Chris Land, 16 of Germany, Graphic Designer Dalia Abdelrahman, 15 of Egypt. The team was supported by teacher Dr. Milan Dlabal.
Also joining UAE Senior Champions 2012 Safire Racing at the F1 in Schools World Finals later this year will be team Blackbird X from the Indian High School in Dubai who won the title of UAE Senior 2nd Place 2012. The team will compete at the international competition through forming a collaboration team with another 2nd place team from different country.
Members of the winning UAE Intermediate Champions 2012 team, Slipstream from Dubai College include Team Manager Tom Webster, 14 of Britain, Management Engineer Arjon Dave, 14 of India, Graphic Designer Cameron MacKay, 14 of Canada, Design Engineer James Hoad, 13 of Britain, Resource Manager Tom Murphy, 14 of Britain and Pit Display Manager, Libby Johnson, 14 of Britain. The team was supported by teacher Mrs. Brenda Ashmore.
Award Winner School
Best Reaction Time - UAE Senior & Intermediate Event 2012 Safire Racing German International School (Dubai)
Best Pit Display – UAE Intermediate Event 2012 Frankies Brisingr Squad The British School Al Khubairat
Best Pit Display – UAE Senior Event 2012 Team Neutrino Dubai College (Dubai)
Best Team Identity – UAE Intermediate Event 2012 Split Second The Indian High School (Dubai)
Best Team Identity – UAE Senior Event 2012 Blackbird X The Indian High School (Dubai)
Best Verbal Presentation –UAE Intermediate Event 2012 Slipstream Dubai College
Best Verbal Presentation –UAE Senior Event 2012 Torque Dubai College
Fastest Car –UAE Intermediate Event 201 Slipstream
Time – 1.21 Dubai College
Fastest Car –UAE Senior Event 201 Blackbird X
Time – 1.104 The Indian High School (Dubai)
Best Rookie Team –UAE Intermediate Event 201 Nitros Storm Jumierah College (Dubai)
Best Rookie Team –UAE Senior Event 201 Safire Racing German International School (Dubai)
Best Engineered Car –UAE Intermediate Event 201 Team Formula X Emirates International School – Meadows
Best Engineered Car –UAE Senior Event 201 Safire Racing German International School (Dubai)
UAE Intermediate 3rd Place – 2012 The cube Repton School (Dubai)
UAE Intermediate 2nd Place – 2012 Supernova Dubai College
UAE Intermediate Champions – 2012 Slipstream Dubai College
UAE Senior 3rd Place – 2012 Team Neutrino Dubai College
UAE Senior 2nd Place – 2012 Blackbird X The Indian High School (Dubai)
UAE Senior Champions – 2012 Safire Racing German International School (Dubai)
About Yas Marina Circuit
Yas Marina Circuit is probably one of the world's most iconic sporting venues. Located on Yas Island, the circuit debuted on October 30, 2009 with the final race of the FIA Formula One World Championship - the inaugural Formula 1™ Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to a capacity crowd of around 50,000. Year round, Yas Marina Circuit hosts an extensive programme of leading international and national motorsport racing series as well as major entertainment events and corporate activities. Supplementary facilities include the Yas Drag Racing Centre, the Yas Racing School and the Yas Kartzone.