College student flies in Great Dunmow Soapbox Race
The annual Great Dunmow Soapbox Race took place on Sunday 30th April, with the 30,000 plus crowd witnessing 97 teams battle it out to be crowned champion of the prestigious race.
With more entries than Red Bull it was the largest soapbox race in the UK, with interest from all across the country. The event raised money for some amazing charities with more than £75k being raised since the first event took place in 2018.
Spectators were treated to incredible hand-built soapboxes, spectacular crashes and some brilliant obstacles. The teams faced jumps, the slippery, blizzard ally, and raced against the clock to be crowned champions.
Stansted Airport College’s entry, G-STAC, was the brainchild of Engineering tutors Rodney Allen and Paul Oakley, and was designed to resemble a passenger jet plane. The soapbox had previously been seen in the London Marathon before being modified for the Soapbox Race.
Aeronautical Engineering students Luc Field and Luca Homer were on hand to provide driver and pit stop duties, with Luc having two very successful runs, the second clocking a fantastic sub 40 seconds. The College finished 23rd on the first run and 31st on the second.
The entry gained a lot of attention in the pits with a constant queue of young admirers wanting a photo taken of themselves inside the cockpit.
Jenny Hogan, Deputy Head of Centre at Stansted Airport College said:
“I was incredibly proud of Rodney Allen and his team of Stansted Airport College students who took part in the Great Dunmow Soapbox Race on Sunday. There was a real buzz at the event and we watched eagerly as our entry ‘flew’ around the track. It was great to see our students take their enrichment project from concept to reality; applying their engineering knowledge and their great teamwork skills. Lots of money was raised on the day for charities including Essex Mind and Diabetes UK.”
Luc Field, 17 from Enfield, who drove the soapbox entry said:
“I really enjoyed the experience. We came 31st out of 97 and I am really proud of our team.”
Rod Allen, Engineering tutor at Stansted Airport College, said:
“I’m really proud of the students who worked on the soapbox entry – they’ve been brilliant! Luc Field (driver) and Luca Homer (pit stop) have worked tirelessly since we first starting working on the entry back in October 2022 as part of their enrichment sessions. They have worked on adapting a pedal go-kart to fit in with stringent rules for safety. Another Engineering student, Teddy Keys-Kidd, has also provided a lot of his time to assist in the project but was sadly not able to be there on the day.”
For all the latest news and updates from the Soapbox Race, visit their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/greatdunmowsoapbox