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Formula Student team powers to new heights


Students from the University of Hull have powered to success in the Formula Student competition.

The Hull University Formula Student (HUFS) team are celebrating after recording their highest-ever finish in Europe's most established educational engineering competition.

A total of 90 universities entered the event, of which 81 teams representing 18 different countries made it through to the contest at Silverstone, the home of British motor racing.

Of these, only 24 made it to the final challenge, the endurance event, and only 14 completed the full 22 laps. 

Brian Houston, Academic Specialist in the University’s Department of Engineering, said: “Our team completed 21 out of 22 laps of the endurance event. After about four laps of looking very competitive, some exhaust wadding moved into the silencer causing a blockage and choking the engine. 

“Both student drivers responded with the upmost of professionalism and determination endeavouring to drive through the issues and bring the car home.. 

“The whole Silverstone crowd got behind the final driver, cheering him on in the hope their support would be enough to encourage the car to limp home the last few metres. Unfortunately, with it operating inefficiently it ran out of fuel on the very last lap.”


“This was a great result for the team and it also puts the University on the international radar for demonstrable high-quality engineering in action."

Brian Houston, Academic Specialist, Department of Engineering


Hull’s performance in the endurance event, coupled with the team’s successes in other challenges, including 30th in the cost event, 28th in design, 23rd in acceleration, 25th in sprint and 14th in the skid pad, led to a record-breaking result. The team finished 32nd overall, an impressive 20 places higher than last year, scoring more than 100 points more than in any previous season.

Brian added: “This was a great result for the team and it also puts the University on the international radar for demonstrable high-quality engineering in action.”

Team member and engineering student Oliver Williams has since been offered a 12-month placement with engineering giants Bosch.

Find out more about studying Mechanical Engineering at the University of Hull

Formula Student aims to develop enterprising and innovative young engineers and to encourage more young people to take up careers in engineering. 

The event is sponsored by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and is backed by industry and high-profile engineers such as its patron, Ross Brawn OBE

The HUFS team was formed in 2010 and first took part in the UK competition in 2012. The team for 2019 included:

  • Fiona Baxter, BEng Mechanical and Medical Engineering with Foundation Year (1st year)
  • Christopher Johnson, BA Business Management and Supply Chain Management with Placement Year (1st year)
  • James Ward, MEng Mechanical Engineering (3rd year)
  • Oliver Williams, BEng Mechanical Engineering with Industrial Placement (2nd year)
  • Oliver Morgan-Clague, BEng Mechanical Engineering (2nd year)
  • John Beaney, MEng Mechanical Engineering (4th year)
  • Liam Neary, BEng Mechanical Engineering (1st year)
  • Kathryn Whitsed, BEng Mechanical Engineering (1st year)
  • Charlie Ward, BEng Electrical and Electronic Engineering with Industrial Placement (1st year)
  • Carrianne Kohler, MEng Mechanical Engineering (2nd year)
  • Ben Pond,: MEng Mechanical Engineering
  • James Morrish, BSc Accounting and Financial Management


Watch the official video of the sprint and endurance event here

To find out more about HUFS, email Brian Houston at

Follow HUFS on Facebook @Hull University Formula Student, Instagram @HullFS or Twitter @HullFS.


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