AUSTRALIAN secondary school students have excelled in Land Rover's annual '4×4 In Schools Global Education Challenge', taking first and second place in the international educational competition that aims to encourage young people to pursue automotive careers, particularly in engineering.
A team from Pine Rivers State High School from Strathpine, Queensland, were crowned world champions at the competition final held on July 6 at Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) headquarters in Coventry, England, ahead of a team from the senior campus of Dubbo College in New South Wales.
The competition attracts students from across the globe, with award recipients across 15 categories this year drawn from the UK, US, South Africa, Portugal, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Malaysia, as well as Australia.
The Pines River team dubbed the "Wombat Warriors" impressed the judges with the best overall performance and best verbal presentation. They achieved an excellent result in the driving challenge which included a wire bridge crossing and rock crawling exercise.
Some 130 students from 12 countries made it into the global final this year.
Teamwork played a huge part in the achievement and they spent around 600 hours working on the project over the past six months.
The team gave been greatly supported by Jaguar Land Rover Australia, Sunshine Coast University, and local retailers.
Winning feeling: Students from Pine Rivers State High School in Queensland celebrate their win in the Land Rover 4x4 In Schools Global Education Challenge.
Students were required to design, build and test miniature remote-control four-wheel-drive vehicles, completing tough off-road courses in regional and national finals.
They were assessed on all elements of the project, not just engineering and production but design and marketing.
Other areas of assessment included the use of social media, portfolio and pit display, sponsorship and marketing plan, research and development, team identity, innovative thinking, and trailer and track performance.
The winners received an Arkwright scholarship from Land Rover, a scholarship at Harper Adams University and a Jaguar Land Rover Academy e-mentoring program which will team them up with the company's engineering graduates.
As well as taking second place overall, the Dubbo team known as 'Zircon' won the award for best-engineered vehicle.
Well Done Wombat Warriors"