A.W. Beattie Career Center students have won the Summit Racing Peddle Car Challenge at World of Wheels Pittsburgh for the third consecutive year.
The career center is a four-time champion in the competition, having also won in 2015.
The most recent victory was in January at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. More than 30 students from various programs across the campus collaborated for the competition.
“It’s so exciting, and with this comes a lot of pressure,” Auto Collision Technology teacher Pat Ciccone said. “The challenge is set, and the bar is raised every year. The kids know we have the tools and equipment here in the shop to do a lot of things out of the box. They impress me more every year.”
Students in Automotive Collision Technology dubbed the peddle car “Drag-U-La” for its Victorian Era theme.
They stepped outside of their program to receive assistance from other classes.
“I can’t say enough about Carpentry, and the casket they made and how passionate they were, which really helped us go to another level,” Ciccone said. “HVAC helped a lot with our plastics and display. Advertising Design embraced it and even created a fun prayer for the car. Auto Tech helped with the drive train and steering system, so it was great to get so many students involved.”
Ciccone said he’s proud of students for overcoming challengers to make the peddle car possible.
“I’m not here to build the car for them,” Ciccone said. “I’m here to help guide and maybe show a demonstration. We blew the bubble for the windshield by taking Plexiglas and evenly heating it to 350 degrees. Things like that are not easy.”
It took students a lot of practice and three tries to create the windshield.
“That’s something we haven’t tried before, so we really learned a lot about how to work and form Plexiglas,” Ciccone said. “The end result was really neat, so how do you top it next year? In a way, I feel bad for the kids coming in next year. They have big shoes to fill if they really want to do it.”
Click here for a photo gallery of students working on the peddle car.