​St Luke’s Teams powered their way to the finish in this Year’s RACQ Technology Challenge

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St Luke’s entered two teams of eight competitors into this year’s RACQ’s annual Technology Challenge. 200 competitors from around Australia descended on the 1.2km track in Maryborough over September 10 to 11.

Their vehicles, a recumbent tricycle – or Human Powered Vehicle – is the product of 12 months careful design and construction by these 16 students and overseen by their passionate Design and Technology teacher, Mr Ben Goodchap.

“The challenge is a test of both team work and personal motivation. Students are required to compete in teams of 8 to keep a recumbent tricycle (Human Powered Vehicle) moving around a 1.2km track for a period of 24 hours,” he said. “It is a great event to be a part of given that there are more than 150 teams of students camped out on the school oval at Maryborough. The atmosphere is very exciting for the kids.”

“Students are required to schedule riding rosters, and help team mates out of the trikes when they become fatigued. They assist with repairs, as well as motivate and encourage each other. Both trikes have been repaired to their former glory after suffering extensive damage during last year’s race,” said Mr Goodchap.

“Rider safety is paramount. Both trikes are fitted with roll-over and side impact protection, as well as 4 point harnesses. Students are required to wear helmets, safety glasses and riding gloves whilst competing.”

The open trike was purchased 6 years ago through student fundraising here at St Luke’s, while the enclosed trike was purchased by Aus Wide Bank two years ago after the (then) year 11 students approached the bank for sponsorship. Both trikes have undergone multiple modifications to ensure they conform to the race rules. The school funds all repairs and maintenance.

“As long as the students have a good time I will be happy,” said Mr Goodchap.