McLaren and team partners, GlaxoSmithKline, have today announced the ‘Pit Stop Challenge’, a competition for secondary school students to use science in order to reduce the teams’ pit stop time.
Aimed at 11-14 year olds, those that take part will be asked to explain their solutions via contact with GSK, with the shortlisted finalists appearing before a panel of judges at GSK’s Human Performance Lab. The teams can investigate any area of the pit stop and the science behind, whether it be improving engineering aspects or that of nutrition and rest.
The winning team will be invited to a factory tour of the McLaren Technology Centre – where they will be able to watch the McLaren pit crew practice their stops.
McLaren and pharmaceutical company GSK have been in partnership since 2011, working to improve the operation at McLaren HQ as well as creating excitement around science, technology, engineering and maths that could produce the technical Formula One personnel of the future.
“Young people in the UK have a great enthusiasm for practical, hands-on science,” said Roger Connor, GSK President of Global Manufacturing and Supply.
“Through our education and training programmes we want to harness and build that initial enthusiasm and encourage young people to really think about where a career in science could take them. As a science-led organisation, we are passionate about supporting the next generation of scientists who can drive forward the UK’s science base. And by teaming up with the McLaren Group to develop this exciting programme, we’re confident that we have created something very special for students.”
This programme, along with F1 In Schools, appeals to a much larger audience than an ordinary science competition in schools may, as it allows the students to see the technical theory used in its practical sense, as part of an exciting sport.
“Today’s students are the scientists and engineers of tomorrow,” said Martin Whitmarsh, Chief Executive of the McLaren Group.
“They will tackle the global challenges of the 21st century and in so doing, will change the world. But unfortunately not enough young people realise just how exciting, creative and varied jobs in science and engineering can be and we are letting invaluable talent slip away as a result. Hopefully we can use the excitement and drama of Formula 1 to demonstrate that today’s careers in science and engineering are very different from the old stereotypes and we can encourage more young people to choose STEM subjects.”