Young boatbuilders test their mettle

Schools challenge to encourage pupils into the marine industry

Youngsters put their technical expertise to good use as they raced model powerboats in the annual Schools Marine Challenge.

Pupils from 26 schools across the South West took part in the event, run by the British Marine Federation and Marine South West on Roadford Lake in Devon.

Participants have to design, build and race the boats and are judged on design, the power systems, teamwork and their race positions.
The aim of the challenge is to introduce school children to the world of marine engineering. Marine companies across the south west link up with local schools to give the pupils an insight into the world of boat building.

Hele’s School (pictured) from Plymouth was the overall winning school, having accumulated the most points throughout all categories of the competition.

Launceston College in Launceston were awarded the Bob Punchard Cup for teamwork. The judges were impressed by the links made with local businesses and their presentation and displays.

The other winning teams from today’s event were:

IC Boats
Race Position – Hele’s School, Plymouth
Technical Prizes: Hull & Superstructure – Hele’s School, Plymouth
Technical Prizes: Powertrain – Launceston College, Launceston

Electric Boats
Race Position – Newquay Tretherras School, Newquay
Technical Prizes: Hull & Superstructure – Launceston College, Launceston
Technical Prizes: Powertrain – West Exe Technology College, Exeter

Solar Boats
Race Position – Kingsbridge Community College, Kingsbridge
Technical Prizes: Hull & Superstructure – Kingsbridge Community College, Kingsbridge
Technical Prizes: Powertrain – Colyton Grammar School, Colyton

Sarah Dhanda, director of training at the British Marine Federation, said: “This is a practical and fun way of getting marine engineering as a career into the minds of school children. We also hope that local marine businesses will seize the opportunity to form longer term partnerships with their schools in order that children can continue to learn about marine businesses and the variety of career opportunities available.”


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