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The McLaren Manufacturing Challenge is an annual competition designed to raise the profile and help improve the image of high-tech manufacturing and engineering.
Schools are challenged to come up with inventive designs for model cars that, just as in Formula 1, must comply with strict regulations, but be as fast as possible. The cars can be as complicated and as ingenious as the teams like, but the challenge is simple - to cover a 10 metre track as quickly as possible, but without using any form of motor.
Finalists teams are invited to spend an afternoon at the McLaren Technology Centre, where they get to see how a Formula 1 team operates and how McLaren designs its world leading super cars, before the big race begins.
The McLaren Manufacturing Challenge forms part of the Government's See Inside Manufacturing programme that aims to show young people that modern manufacturing is a high-tech industry and can offer fantastic career opportunities.
The 2012 winning team, Reed's School from Cobham in Surrey, was presented their trophy by the Business Secretary Vince Cable and Ron Dennis CBE, Executive Chairman of McLaren Group.
"Manufacturing is a highly-creative industry that offers rewarding and well paid careers," said Cable. "Working closely with leading businesses like McLaren through the See Inside Manufacturing programme, we are demonstrating to young people first-hand what jobs in manufacturing and engineering are like today."
Discussing the challenge, Ron Dennis CBE said: "As a country we are blessed with intelligent and creative young people who are capable of becoming world leaders in whichever field they choose. Sadly, in the past, too few have chosen engineering or manufacturing. That's why we run the McLaren Manufacturing Challenge and support the Government's efforts to improve the image of industry."
"Britain has produced some of the world's most inspirational engineers, who took on enormous challenges and found ways to do things better," he added. "people like Stephenson, Brunel and Whittle have always inspired me and it's about time we started to inspire the next generation."
This is the second year that the McLaren has run its Manufacturing Challenge, with double the number of schools taking part.
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