On Tuesday, 27 February, 40 Year 7 and 8 students visited the Williams Racing offices in Oxford. The offices were live sites, and students had to be aware that it was a business day, with the team having recently finished testing and being busy preparing for the first race of the season.

During the day, the students participated in three activities, the first in two groups of 20 and the final in groups of 5. Firstly, the students had a tour of the Williams Racing museum where knowledgeable staff talked students through the engineering and history of the F1 team, from the first car driven by Alan Jones through to championship-winning cars of Mansell, Senna, and Hill. Later in the tour, students were able to hold the wheel from George Russell’s 2023 car and learn about the materials used in the construction of the car and their properties.

For the second activity, students took part in four 20-person F1 races in the esports lounge. There was fierce competition and some excellent driving on iconic tracks such as Silverstone and Monaco. The best drivers were those who were able to carefully avoid collisions in the first few corners and find empty track to race ahead.

In the final activity of the day, students were placed in groups of 5 where they had allocated roles to market and code an autonomous car that could drive around a scale replica of Silverstone. The winning team was presented with STEM certificates and Williams Racing hats. A thoroughly enjoyable day was had, and all students left with an appreciation of the various STEM skills that go into an F1 career, as well as a Williams Racing goody bag.