Some 68 cars - from 183 entries - have qualified for the final of the Ford/Greenpower electric car marathon for schools to be held at the Goodwood, Sussex, motor racing circuit on 5 October, 2003. And given some outstanding performances in the qualifying heats earlier this year, it is anticipated that the 158-mile record distance covered by the winning car in the 2001 final is likely to be beaten this year.
Started five years ago to further the cause of engineering as a career in schools and to provide practical engineering projects for pupils, the Ford/Greenpower marathon now attracts entries from all over England and Wales.
"Each school is given the same motor and batteries set and it is up to each team of 12 pupils to design and build their own car according to a formula which sets the rules for design and safety," said Barry Shears of Greenpower. "The marathon has a Le Mans-type format with the car that manages the most number of laps in six hours being declared the winner."
Peter Mott, who is Ford's senior management representative on the board of Greenpower said: "Ford supports this initiative because we think it is a great educational outreach programme involving real 'hands-on' science and engineering teamwork which, hopefully, will get the pupils interested in taking up engineering as a profession."
The Ford/Greenpower marathon on 5October, 2003, begins at 11.00hrs and finishes at 17.00hrs. Entry to the Goodwood motor racing circuit for the event is free.
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