MARYBOROUGH has been transformed into the centre of clean-energy vehicles, with 6000 students from around the country in town for the RACV Energy Breakthrough event.
A record 379 schools will take part in the four-day program, which starts today.
The event, now in its 22nd year, aims to inspire student interest in sustainable transport and involves challenges to build energy-efficient cars.
Students of all age groups will take part in races and endurance events, trialling environmentally friendly machines.
RACV event co-ordinator Ernest Litera said this year’s Breakthrough was expected to attract more than 12,000 spectators and 6000 students.
“Every year we are amazed at the interest and enthusiasm of participants; the success of the event has exceeded all our expectations,” he said.
“Our dream was to create an event that would grab the imagination of young people and help them understand the importance of teamwork and the satisfaction of working toward a common goal – and every year we see that dream brought to life.” Central Goldfields Shire mayor Barry Rinaldi said it was one of the most exciting weekends in Maryborough.
“Most of our major ovals have become tent villages. There’s big marquees going up and vans running all over the place,” he said.
“It gives a massive boost to the town. It’s really one of the biggest motor events in Victoria.”
Maryborough Caravan Park owner Danny Miller said the influx of visitors meant all accommodation places were booked up.
“It’s all reserved pretty well in advance,” he said. “We’ve got all the primary school kids here. It’s a full house as normal.”
Maryborough’s Princes Park is used as the testing track for the four-day event.
The program aims to encourage participants to examine and use the latest technology, while considering its impact on the environment.
The RACV Energy Breakthrough is jointly managed by the Department of Education, the Country Education Project and Central Goldfields Shire Council, Maryborough, and sponsored by the RACV.
SPEED: Carisbrook Primary School grade 2, 3 and 4 students cheer on their HPV racers at the Energy Breakthrough event last year. Picture: JIM ALDERSEY
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