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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 18 January 2021

Dubai pupils race into world finals of Formula One in Schools competition

Team Delta X-15 will compete against more than 50 teams from around the world at an online event in March

A team of Dubai teenagers is going full speed ahead for success after reaching the world finals of the F1 in Schools competition.

Team Delta X-15, made up of six pupils from Gems World Academy Dubai, impressed a panel of judges with their design for their own miniature racing car.

The motoring marvels will now battle it out against more than 50 teams from around the world at an online event to be held in Australia in March.

From creating their own team uniforms to building a car pit booth, the group mirrored a Formula One team by designing, testing and racing a miniature F1 car with genuine marketing and sponsorship.

Each year, I believe there is usually about 300,000 teams that compete globally for the competition but only a select few make it to the finals

Arnav Kedia, Team Delta X-15

Late last year, the team, whose members are aged between 14 and 16, clinched first place in the national finals for the second time in a row.

“Each year, I believe there is usually about 300,000 teams that compete globally for the competition but only a select few make it to the finals,” Arnav Kedia from Team Delta X-15 told The National.

“The competition comprises so many different elements, which makes it so rigorous.

“We have to design our own car using 3D CAD/CAM software so that it looks as legitimate as a real racing car.”

Entrants must keep to strict specifications for the design of their car to take part, with the miniature F1 cars having to weigh at least 50 grams, have a total length of at least 170 millimetres and not exceeding 210mm, a width that does not exceed 85mm and a maximum height of 65mm.

The small-but-perfectly-formed race cars will be put through their paces on a 20-metre track to decide who truly found the formula for success.

The team consists of Arnav, Alexander Ghorayeb, Aisyah Torbett, Kamrin Archary, Kapil Shenoy and Tudor Balaj.

“As a team we all bring a different speciality to the project which has been a huge part of our success, like Aisyah for instance, she’s just so creative,” Arnav said.

“We’ve also been lucky enough to meet with Formula One engineers who have taught us how to make our car more aerodynamic for better race performance.”

Come March, the team will present their work to a panel of judges, including specialists from the world of Formula One.

They will evaluate the pupils’ overall work, looking at varying elements including sponsorship deals, design and team identity.

Owing to Covid-19 the event will be held remotely, but the Delta X-15 racing car will be shipped to Australia to compete in the final race showdown.

“When we won the national finals last year it was the highlight of the academic calendar,” said team member Alexander Ghorayeb, 15.

“Because it was a virtual event we all watched it in the conference room and let out these huge roars and screams. It was an unreal moment and we were just so ecstatic.

“I’m confident we’ll improve our performance in the world finals.

“In 2019 we came 17th out of 52 teams. That’s impressive but there is always room for improvement.”

Within the next few months, the team said it will work to improve different elements of its design, including car testing, to tweak its overall race performance.

“In the national finals we received first place for team identity, marketing and sponsorship and best engineering,” Arnav said.

“Going forward, we want to focus on areas we didn’t perform as strong in, such as car testing.

“For the car to be as aerodynamic as possible more testing is essential as we can add features to reduce things like turbulence and drag.”

Updated: January 12, 2021 04:27 PM

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