Category Archives: Abu Dhabi

A Scottish Safari


On the morning of the 14th, we met up with our Scottish counterparts. Amie Morrison, Louise Durham, Mel Ruzgar and Louise Durham flew in from Edinburgh, and after countless hours of Skype meetings, we finally met for the first time. The day was fairly relaxed, as we let the girls settle in to the hotel. At midday team registration took place, and we were bombarded with a wealth of information about the coming days. It was exciting to discover the many activities that would follow: a visit to the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Ferrari World, Yas Water World and the Etihad Airways Grand Prix.

After lengthy discussions, preparations and catching up, we headed off on a desert safari in the late afternoon. All the Australian teams and supporters packed in to a fleet of SUV’s and headed towards the desert sand dunes. When we arrived, we sped across sand dunes that were higher than buildings. It was incredible to slide down the face of a dune, throwing up sand and moving as if we were surfing on a wave, all inside a powerful 4WD. 



imageWe drove for about 20 mi Ute’s before arriving at a remote camel farm, where we all got up close and personal to a train of camels. We then headed off, continuing our sand surfing and arrived at an ‘oasis’, where we spent the evening. The night began with some intense sand surfing down an incredibly high dune, along with awkward camel riding, shaming Mr Honeywill, who rode ‘valiantly’. As the sun set, we sat around a table in a traditional setting and feasted on Arabic food and drinks. Soon after, we endured a final climb up the skyscraper-high sand dune, only to be trapped up there as the lights of the Oasis suddenly failed…When power was restored, we were treated to an interactive belly dance, which saw Anton and Louise attempt a traditional Arabic dance.

After returning to the Radisson, we had a final team gathering before a well-earned rest.

Take a look at some pictures here, and stay tuned for our next post!

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An Overview of Newington’s F1 Team ‘Impact’, Recently Featured on ABC


This Wednesday (12 November), six boys from Newington: Evan Favos (9/ME), Sebastian Hodge (9/ME), Roger Li (9/FL), Anton Maraldo (9/ME), Ashan Karanaguran (11/KL), Felix Shannon (11/PR), along with Mr Honeywill and Mr Pyne, will be racing off to Abu Dhabi to compete in the World Titles for the international STEM challenge, the F1 in Schools. This challenge tests students by making them face the same tasks and challenges as an actual Formula 1 Team. Teams must Design, make and race a model car as well as assemble a marketing, sponsorship and media package around it. At the beginning of this year, Newington’s lead Development Class Team, “Quantum” (Evan, Sebastian, Roger and Anton) competed in and won the Australian National Titles, earning them the right to compete at the upcoming World Titles. Being a ‘Development’ class team, the boys were made to pair with an international Collaboration team. The competition sponsors selected a Scottish all-girl team called “Rapid Input” to join our boys on their campaign to the world titles. Together the teams formed “Impact” and have been working against the clock since early this year to prepare for the World Titles.

On top of their Scottish teammates, two students from former Senior Professional class team “Zipper Effect” (Ashan and Felix) volunteered to help the team work towards achieving their best at the World Titles. With the guidance and assistance of Mr. Honeywill, Ms. Lak, their families and sponsors, the boys will be competing against some of the best student engineers in the world, in the hopes of maintaining Australia’s current 4 win streak of the World Titles.

Recently, the team was featured on an ABC news segment. The ABC spoke to all the boys in the team one afternoon at Newington and acquired footage of them working. The TV appearance gained excellent publicity for the team and for Newington. The TV segment can be viewed here.

The boys would especially like to thank Mr. Honeywill, for his many years not only supporting them, but other Newington teams who have competed in the F1 in Schools, taking hours upon hours out of his personal time to ensure that the teams do their best. The boys would also like to extend a special thanks to Ms. Lak, who has volunteered to support the team throughout their whole campaign selflessly, as she is unable to join us overseas for the World Titles. The team could not have wished for a better support network and they hope their best will be enough to win.

Ashan Karunagaran (11/KL), Felix Shannon (11/PR)
Student Mentors to Impact