Belfast Telegraph

Queen's launch their new formula car ahead of student racing challenge

Gerald Lennon

A group of engineering students from Queen's University have unveiled their latest formula race car head of next month's big race.

The reveal took place in front of Queen's University Layon Building earlier today with most of the team present. 

26 students will travel to England as part of Queen’s Formula Racing (QFR) team, and will be taking their newly designed QFR18 motor to compete against more than 100 countries from around the world, in an annual racing competition. 

Formula Student (FS) is organised by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and is the world’s largest student engineering design competition. 

The students involved have 10 months to design, build and race their own formula racing car against other teams, as they gain useful experience to help propel their future engineering careers.  

This year’s team leader for QFR is Gavin White (23), a final-year Mechanical Engineering student from Coleraine, who hopes to lead his team to victory.

Gavin said: “It’s been a stressful but also very rewarding experience. 

"I’ve gained a lot of useful skills including team management, project planning and time keeping. 

"It’s a great way for us to practice and refine our skills and helps us prepare for the future.

“This year our focus has been on reliability."

Over 3000 students are taking part in this year’s race, with 128 teams from 25 countries including US, Africa and a plethora of European teams.  

With the mechanical car almost complete, the students are looking forward to finally getting the chance to race it. 

QFR have been taking part in the contest since 2000, but Gavin is confident that the team will do well this year.

The team recently took the newly built car to Nutts Corner Circuit to test drive it. 

The QFR team is being supported by Vickerstock, an engineering recruitment agency based in Belfast, who recently signed a three-year sponsorship deal with the team. 

Darren McVicker, the director of Vickerstock commented: “At Vickerstock we feel this project fits perfectly with our ongoing commitment to promoting the wider engineering sector. 

“We are delighted to be supporting QFR and future engineering talent."

The recruitment agency will be covering the expenses of getting the students over to England and back.

“The enthusiasm, dedication and commitment shown by all of the team is infectious and this project demonstrates the combination of the theory and the practical.  

“The variety of both technical and soft skills required in securing a successful and competitive car build is a true reflection of what is required from the modern engineer.” 

Darren believes this is the perfect project to challenge the students and encourage the next generation of engineers. 

This year is the 20th anniversary of the competition, which takes place over 13-15 July in Silverstone, England. 

Darren added: “You can keep up to date on all stages on the team’s progress at our website and social media and I hope to see the wider engineering sector get behind the students in wishing them the very best on competition weekend. 

"We’re looking forward to supporting the team at Silverstone.”

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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