Four students from Bede Academy in Blyth have set their sights on international honours after racing ahead to claim the title of overall regional winner of the F1 in Schools competition.

Developed to inspire students to take up STEM subjects by challenging them to create a miniature F1 car, Team Scuderia Velocita designed and built their winning entry.

Last year the team won their regional heat but are now determined to improve on that performance by winning through to the Aramaco F1 in Schools World Finals.

The team comprises team manager Ruby, Benjamin, Rhys and George, who is the son of Scott, a delivery logistics planner at Cramlington-based Moody Logistics and Storage. He mentioned the initiative to sister company Heathline Commercials, which readily agreed to sponsor them.

Team Scuderia Velocita picked up four trophies at the regional heats held at Newcastle University for best engineered car, judges’ choice, verbal presentation plus sponsorship and marketing, making them the overall winners and sending them through to the national finals held in March. Success there will see them with a chance of competing in the Schools World Finals.

George said: “We’re really enjoying being part of a strong team and really hope we can go all the way to the world finals.”

The students work together, assigning roles and responsibilities, each taking ownership of a specific area, including car design, manufacturing, testing, as well as branding and sponsorship.

In the regional heats, they raced their car against the other teams, as well as presenting their project to a team of judges made up of industry professionals.

Andrew Thelwell, Principal of Bede Academy said: “Congratulations to the team for how well they performed in all aspects of this competition. We are so proud of these exceptional students and what they have already achieved. The same is true of the staff and the sponsorship and support that they have been given. We wish them all the very best as they move onto the national finals.’

Gavin Cape, director at Heathline Commercials, which repairs and services a wide variety of commercial vehicles, said it was pleased to support the team financially.

He said: “This is a great initiative to encourage young people into STEM careers, and I hope some of them may consider going on to become future vehicle technicians to help bridge the current skills shortfall.

“I hope that the backing of local businesses like Heathline Commercials will help them succeed at the national finals and allow them to progress and flourish on the international stage.”