STIFF COMPETITION: Twenty-seven secondary schools from Malacca, Negri Sembilan and Johor took part in the competition
JOHOR BARU: THE main hall of Kolej Perdana, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Skudai, was a hive of activity as students and teachers took part in the "F1 in School" southern zone competition.
Twenty-seven secondary schools from Johor, Malacca and Negri Sembilan took part in the event.
The competition is an engineering and design action-project specially tailored for secondary students to design, analyse, test, manufacture and race miniature CO2-powered balsa wood Formula 1 cars.
The challenge was a complex one and tested the students' skills and knowledge of physics, aerodynamics, design, manufacturing, leadership/teamwork, media and project management skills.
The three-day competition was organised by the co-curriculum division of the Education Ministry.
The co-curriculum programme which was introduced in the United Kingdom in 2001, has been implemented in Malaysia since 2005.
One of its main objectives is to encourage students to take an interest in engineering-based co-curricular activities.
The competition was officiated by Kamarudin Mohamad Tahir, who represented state education director Mohd Nor A. Ghani. Also present was Education Ministry Co-Curriculum Division assistant director Noorazlina Abdullah.
Johor was represented by Sekolah Sultan Ismail (SSI), SMK Agama Johor Baru (SMKA JB), and SMK Bandar Putra, Kulaijaya.
The competition comprised tests in verbal presentation, display booths and engineering design.
The competitors were asked questions in engineering, aerodynamics, marketing and sponsorship by the panel of judges.
Each team was required to set up a display booth to exhibit information about the competition.
Cars designed with computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing software raced around a 20-metre track, which records speeds of up to a thousandth of a second. The team with the shortest time in their category won the event.
SSI Physics teacher cum F1 in School trainer for the three teams, Fakhrul Razi Ahmad, said dedication, hard work and commitment were criteria for success.
The Ace Reborn team of SM Sains Muzaffar Shah, Malacca, was the champion in the competition. The group also won the "Knockout Winner" and "Fastest Car" awards. Ace Reborn's car won with a time of 1.147 seconds.
The Forward and Cumulo teams of SSI were the first and second runners-up.
Comulo also took home the best Pit Stop Display (Booth) award and the Best Marketing and Sponsorship award.
"We worked together to exchange ideas to produce a presentable display booth within the permitted time," team leader Muhammad Ezwan Azman said.
The Best Portfolio award was won by the Exalte Racing team of SMKA JB.
The Best Engineered Car award and Best Verbal Presentation went to X Celero of SMK King George V and SMK Puteri respectively, from Seremban, Negri Sembilan.
The TETA EX team of SMK Seremban 2 won the outstanding sportsmanship award.
Kamarudin presented the awards and praised the participants for their team spirit and innovative skills.
The winners will take part in the "F1 in School" competition finals in Penang in October.