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Tuesday, 2 May, 2000, 12:06 GMT 13:06 UK
Revving up maths
Johnny Herbert with primary pupils
Johnny Herbert meets pupils at the competition launch
Children are being invited to develop their maths skills by entering a competition to set up and run their own virtual Grand Prix racing car.

The competition is designed to encourage the use of information and communications technology in primary schools to support the teaching and learning of maths.

Using special software, children will need to work in teams of four, using their maths skills to plan and set up a virtual car.

Teams will have to calculate the fuel requirements, pit stop timings, and maximum safe speeds their virtual car will need to race on a given circuit.

The competition is being run by the British Educational Communications Agency (Becta) to support the government's Maths Year 2000 initiative, and is sponsored by Jaguar.

Maths Year 2000 is aimed at raising standards in maths across the country, by making it fun and accessible.

Maths 'key' for drivers

Jaguar driver Johnny Herbert met up with some pupils at Silverstone to formally launch the competition.

To enter, schools need to download the free competition software from the Becta website.

Between July and September, they can enter their best team into online regional heats, which will be held in October.

The winners of the regional heats will go forward to the final, which will be hosted by Jaguar in November.

The overall challenge champions will win a day out at a Jaguar racing event in 2001, as well as computer equipment for their school.

Jaguar spokesman Les Ratcliffe said: "Jaguar sees the improvement of maths in our schools as key for the engineers and racing drivers of tomorrow."

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See also:

20 Feb 00 | Education
Celebrities add to maths campaign
05 Jan 00 | Education
Maths Year clock starts ticking
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